Sauber-Ferrari was left to count the cost of reliability problems during the Italian Grand Prix as both Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi saw potential points' finishes go wanting due to gearbox issues.
Though both drivers had struggled in qualifying, with Perez 15th and Kobayashi 17th, a focused long distance race set-up successfully hauled them into the points, ahead of several key rivals, including Force India and Scuderia Toro Rosso.
Indeed, Perez's one-stop strategy was working well, the Mexican getting up as high as seventh before gearbox issues intervened on lap 33.
“Despite our poor grid positions, we were doing well in the race, but then both of us retired, and that is tough. I started 15th and our race strategy was to do a very long stint on the harder tyres - the medium compound - and in the end only a short stint on the soft tyres.
“From lap 20 I had been in seventh. I had a gap in front and one behind, so it all looked good, but then first of all I could not use third gear and then after that couldn't shift in any gear. We missed a great opportunity to score points today.”
Perez's retirement came ten laps after Kobayashi was also forced to pull over with a similar problem, the Japanese driver having been running in tenth position at the time.
“This is, of course, disappointing for everybody. I had no power anymore no matter which gear I selected. Until then it had been quite an exciting and difficult race for me. I had a set of the new harder tyres - the medium compound - for the start and, of course, the plan was to stay out with them for a long time.
“Sergio proved later that this was possible, but after the accident in turn one, which involved a couple of cars, everybody tried to stop so as not to run into the accident. I touched the car which braked in front of me.
“Not only did my front wing come lose, but I also damaged a tyre and therefore I had to change to a set of used soft tyres. Because of this our strategy was ruined, but I was still very confident about scoring points today. It is a true shame.”
With Paul di Resta finishing eighth, Force India have nudged Sauber down to seventh in the constructors' standings.