Sauber team boss Monisha Kaltenborn admitted that the entire Swiss squad was mystified by the stewards' decision that forced Nico Hulkenberg to cede track position to Sergio Perez in the Singapore Grand Prix.

The pair were battling with Williams' Pastor Maldonado following the first round of pit-stops in the Marina Bay race when Hulkenberg cut a corner and rejoined in front of the McLaren driver. Although television replays suggested that contact between the pair had sent the Sauber over the kerbs and beyond track limits, the officials decided otherwise, and instructed Hulkenberg to 'hand back' the place - even though the German had been in front at the time of the alleged indiscretion.

"Nico drove a fantastic race and was rewarded with two points, [but] we find the decision by the race director to give the position back to Sergio Perez very harsh," Kaltenborn confirmed, "We have to accept this decision [even though] he did not gain an advantage, but merely avoided a collision by leaving the track....."

Related Articles

Hulkenberg, too, was adamant that he had not gained an advantage by taking the corner on the wrong side of the kerbs - and his astonishment at being asked to cede the position lingered well into the race's sole safety car period.

"I had a very good start and then a racing situation with Sergio Perez," he reflected, "There was a Williams in the fight as well, and Sergio was on the inside, so I had to leave space and caught the outer kerb. Then my car bottomed and I was off. In the end, I did have to give back the position to him, and I don't quite agree with that [as] I was in front of Sergio before and after the corner..."

Hulkenberg went on to finish ninth after his tyres faded in the late stages, while Perez, whose rubber lasted longer, finished just one place ahead of the German after 61 laps.