Silver Sauber Seeks Success In “Challenge” Of Small Spaces

Sauber were one of the unlikely heroes of last season. Finishing on the podium four times helped the Swiss team to a strong sixth-placed finish in the Constructor’s Championship, one of the highest in the history and but for a lack of qualifying performance it may have been more.

The car with which they hope will deliver more in 2013 was showcased with a a striking silver livery, a departure from its recent displays of largely black and white colours. The main talking point was of the slim sidepods, which had an interesting situation of origin. As it turned out, Sergio Perez’ crash in qualifying at Monaco in 2011 was the event which was the inspiration behind the design.

“The sidepods are a bold move, a bold design, but we are pretty confident.”

“Checo had quite a bad accident in Monaco a few years ago and when we got the car back and we saw the sidepod all squashed in, we thought ‘I wonder if we could do that?'” said chief designer Matt Morris.

“One of the huge challenges for us is in packaging all of the radiators and boxes. Like most things in Switzerland, we got it just in time!”

“In terms of the chassis, this is an area we’ve spent a lot of time and effort on to save weight. We’ve made some savings without compromising safety.

“The exhaust is not massively different to what we finished with last year, we just further enhanced it.

“The front wing is predominantly a carry-over from last year.

“One of the small regulation changes is an additional legality check on the front wing, so we’ve had to spend a lot of time changing the structure of the wing to be sure we pass that.

“That’s something we spent a lot of time over the winter developing.”

It is a youthful driving pairing for a team who historically prefers younger drivers

The team have two new drivers this year, one of last year’s star performers in Nico Hulkenberg from Force India and test driver promotee Esteban Gutierrez.Hulkenberg raised eyebrows with what many saw as a sideways move between teams which have so often contested the midfield battle in Formula One and the German said he was excited about the first race in Australia.

“Of anyone here probably my own expectations are the highest, that’s part of the job. It’s an exciting time and I’m just looking forward to getting to Melbourne.”

New team principal Monisha Kaltenborn stated that there are high expectations on the young pairing as they looked to maintain what was an increasingly good set of resultsf rom the Swiss squad, following on from a very successful 2011.

“We have very high expectations and both of them know that”, said Kaltenborn.

“Two thousand and twelve was a very successful year for us,” she said. “We not only moved up from seventh to sixth place in the constructors’ standings, but also improved our points total from 44 in 2011 to 126 last season. We have a strong platform in place now, on which we are aiming to build and continue our upward curve.”


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