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'Bitterly disappointing' start to 2013 for Sauber

Sauber were left empty-handed at the end of the Australian Grand Prix, after they were able to field only one of their two cars in Melbourne.
Being unable to field Nico Hulkenberg in the first Grand Prix of the 2013 F1 season on Sunday was a bitter blow for the Sauber team, after a fuel system issue with his new C32 left the German driver unable to take up his 11th place spot on the starting grid in Melbourne for the start of the Australian Grand Prix.

"I'm bitterly disappointed about what happened today," said Hulkenberg. "But at the same time I'm not blaming anyone. Things like this happen in racing.

"What is particularly bothering me is the fact that I lost all this mileage today, which is so important particularly at the beginning of the season," he pointed out.

"This was not the way we expected the new F1 season to start," said Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn. "The problem with the fuel system was unlucky, particularly at this point in the race weekend. We are very sorry for Nico."

Hulkenberg with philosophical about yet another Australian Grand Prix not going according to plan for him.

"Obviously, Melbourne is not a good place for me," he sighed. "It was my third Grand Prix here and the third time that I leave this place empty handed. The only good thing is that the next race takes place next weekend."

That left the team's rookie driver Esteban Gutierrez as the team's only representative at Albert Park on race day, starting from 18th on the grid after suffering a nasty accident at the end of Saturday's rain-hit Q1 qualifying session.

"I want to thank the whole team, because yesterday in qualifying we had a good chance and today we were able to recover some of what we lost yesterday," he young Mexican driver said.

"My main goal was to finish the race, and to achieve that is really enjoyable," he continued. "We have a good base and in the future we will try and push forward."

"Esteban drove a solid first race," Kaltenborn said, while lamenting that the grid position had been just too much for Gutierrez to have a realistic chance to overcome in the race, which saw him finish outside the points in 13th place, a lap off the leaders.

"Starting from P18 was too much of a handicap for him," agreed Kaltenborn. "I'm confident we will solve the problems we had and that we will be in better shape in Malaysia.




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
17.03.2013- Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), Sauber F1 Team C32 and Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sauber F1 Team C32
16.03.2013- Esteban Gutierrez (MEX), Sauber F1 Team C32
16.03.2013- Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sauber F1 Team C32
17.03.2013- Qualifying, Valtteri Bottas (FIN), Williams F1 Team FW35 leads Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sauber F1 Team C32
15.03.2013- Free Practice 2, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sauber F1 Team C32
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33
20.04.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India VJM07 during pit stop
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33 during pit stop
20.04.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India VJM07
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33
20.04.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India VJM07
20.04.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India VJM07
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33
20.04.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India VJM07
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33
20.04.2014- Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India VJM07
20.04.2014- Race, Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C33

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Josh - Unregistered

March 19, 2013 6:56 AM

After they ditched kamui I hope this bad run continues for this team... With the hulk and koba they would of been a fun young team to watch. Watch all that Mexican money goto waste...

Amigo - Unregistered

March 19, 2013 11:44 PM

Nico Hulkenberg seems to be heritage Kamui Kobayashi garage. Kamui car has always problems even though he tried to score regulary. Kamui car had Hydraulic problem in most of races but he always brought car to home. I have no doubt about Kamui car was under funded and Perez car was always top condition. If Nico Hulkenberg heritage Kamui garage and then Good Luck to Nico. I hope Kamui Kobayashi will drive for Ferrari formula One team.



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