21 May 2014
Sutil targets first Sauber F1 points of 2014
After a barren start to their relationship, Adrian Sutil and Sauber are hoping to find the F1 top ten on the mean streets of Monaco.
Adrian Sutil has set himself and the Sauber team the target of a top ten finish in this weekend's Monaco Grand Prix.
While that is not surprising given the competitive nature of the sport, Sutil's goal carries extra weight as neither he or team-mate Esteban Gutierrez have been able to score points in 2014, and the German knows that the unpredictable nature of Monaco could be the ideal place to start.
Sutil narrowly missed out on the final point in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, but has been the victim of three retirements and a lowly 17th-place finish in the four races since, while Gutierrez has fared only marginally better, with twelfth in Melbourne and successive 16th positions in China and Spain sandwiching back-to-back DNFs.
“For us, the most important aspect will be that our car works well and we can achieve a good performance,” Sutil insisted on the eve of practice, “My objective is to travel back home with some points in my pocket. Looking back, I have good memories from the races in Monte Carlo as I collected some points almost every year and, last year, it was an exciting race for me as I finished in fifth position. It is always a special grand prix, and I am looking forward to it.”
Sauber believes that it is well-prepared for Monaco after last week's test in Barcelona, where it focused on fine tuning the aerodynamic package and also on suspension developments.
“The race in Monaco has a unique character and it's a real challenge for drivers and engineers,” Giampaolo Dall'Ara, head of track engineering, confirmed, “Our main focus for lap times will be on mechanical grip and rear end stability. The power unit has a lesser relevance than in most of the other circuits, however, good torque progression and general driveability will make a difference.
“We are confident of having made a further step forward at the test in Barcelona, so we will be introducing some updates to the aerodynamic package and the rear suspension. In the last couple of years, we've been witnessing some strong pace management in the race in order to minimise the number of pit-stops, possibly bringing it down to a single one, but the lack of overtaking opportunities around the circuit make a good qualifying very relevant.”
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