Adrian Sutil says Sauber should target scoring points in every race this season despite a tough winter of testing.
Sauber struggled with its brake-by-wire system during pre-season and at the final test Sutil's best time was over three seconds slower than the fastest lap posted by Felipe Massa. With the new regulations making testing performances even harder to understand, asked by Crash.net during an exclusive interview
what Sauber could realistically target for the season, Sutil replied: “That's a good question, I don't know.
“I don't know where we are. We've seen so many big differences in lap times between the tests and nobody knows if that is light fuel or the tyre – we have all the ranges of tyre – we have qualifying mode and race mode which is an unbelievable difference in terms of power… So it's too early to say where we are, but I hope we can be in the top 10. That is always the target for this kind of team here and I think every race the target is to score a point.”
And asked if scoring regular points was more important than any final championship position, Sutil said: “That's how I would like it, absolutely; consistency and also progress. Everyone will progress and we need to do the same. Let's see where we are. If you are always in the points then you want more, but the orientation has to be right. We are focused and committed, we want to go forward.”
Having joined Sauber over the winter from Force India, Sutil also said it had been better for him to have a secure future early after waiting until the last pre-season test of 2013 to regain his Force India drive.
“It was much better preparation in one way. At least from December onwards I could be in the factory already and speak to everybody; there were a lot of new faces of course. With new regulations there are new things for a driver to learn and the earlier you start the better you are. But at the same time the car was a bit late getting ready, and where we are right now I think is early for everyone. If you look at every team and every car I don't think we are any different to any of the others. It's a big challenge what we have in Formula One with the limited testing we have before a season, especially when you have such a drastic regulation change.”