Sauber is set to introduce a series of major upgrades this weekend in Spain in an effort to help it challenge for regular top ten finishes through the remainder of the F1 season.
The team has scored points in three of the four races run so far this season, although it would have picked up a double score in Australia had it not been for an issue with the rear wing that saw both Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez excluded from the results.
Eager to build on a solid start to the year, Sauber will now take a series of improved parts to Catalunya this weekend with technical director James Key confident that that the team will find 'a good few tenths of a second' improvement in its lap times.
“We'll have a new, quite significant aero package on the car, which will be a completely new front wing, updates to the front and rear brake ducts, new bodywork, new devices around the floor leading edge and under the chassis, and we'll be testing the new exhaust system again,” he said. “We'll also be continuing our work on the mechanical update we had in Istanbul, which proved to be positive. So it will be interesting to see how this works.
“If it works well it should give us a good few tenths of a second improvement in lap time. Our goal is to continue our good race form, to try to improve qualifying and finish as high in the points as possible.”
Team leader Kobayashi said it was vital for the team to try and get to grips with the upgrades quickly in order to push for points.
“Every team and driver knows the circuit in Barcelona extremely well from winter testing,” he said. “Our car seemed to be good there in February and March. For the next Grand Prix weekend it will be important to focus on the set-up of our car with the new parts, and we will have to make sure the update results in an improvement in qualifying and the race.”