Sauber’s Qualifying “According To Plan”

Gutierrez will be pushed back down the grid by a penalty (Photo Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd)

Sauber continues to struggle for performance, after enduring a difficult qualifying session ahead of tomorrow’s Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona.

Nico Hulkenberg managed to extract the maximum of the car’s potential and will start fifteenth, whilst Esteban Gutierrez was given a three place grid penalty for impeding Kimi Raikkonen and will start nineteenth.

“Qualifying went according to plan today. It is disappointing, as we are simply too slow. The updates this weekend were a step in the right direction, and the set up of the car during qualifying was good, but not good enough as the other teams might have improved even more,” Hulkenberg said.

“I am very satisfied with my lap in Q2. It was the perfect lap. We used two sets of mediums in order to try to get a better grid position, but in the end it wasn’t enough, because we were missing pace. Other than that, I think we can be satisfied with what we have done, but we simply need to find more speed,” he added.

Meanwhile, Gutierrez said he was not satisfied with his performance today.

“Qualifying today was tricky. Yesterday and in FP3 this morning I felt quite confident and the laps seemed to be consistent. Overall I think the updates are a good step forward. I could have got more speed out of the last set of tyres, but it’s a delicate position when you are driving on the limit and I tried to get the best out of what we have. I’m not satisfied, as I want to be further in front. We simply need to keep pushing to get more speed.”

Team principal Monisha Kaltenborn announced herself disappointed with the result too.

“We cannot be satisfied with P15 and P16. Especially on a track like this one, it will not be easy to achieve a lot from where we start. Both drivers showed great performances today. This shows we have reduced the gap in qualifying, but still have to improve more.”