No points for the first time in 2012 left Sauber F1 scratching their heads as to just what had gone awry with their approach to the Bahrain Grand Prix.

"We were just too slow today," admitted Sergio Perez after finishing just out of the points in 11th place in Bahrain, the heights of his second place in Malaysia a distant memory at this stage. "We knew this circuit would not be an easy one for us."

"Our problem was a general lack of speed," agreed his team mate Kamui Kobayashi. "We will work hard to fix it."

Beyond that, it was differing but nonetheless familiar problems affecting the two drivers' race performances.

"I had a lot of tyre degradation and due to a problem at the pit stop we lost a place and a point to Michael [Schumacher]," said Perez, admitting that the former world champion was too fast on the straight for Perez to have any chance of catching him.

"For me the start was too slow," offered Kobayashi. "I had too much wheelspin and we will look into that."

The team split strategies between the two cars, with Perez planning three stops and the Japanese driver handed the chance of running a two-stop strategy that ultimately "didn't work out", as Kobayashi admitted.

"I started on a set of new medium compound tyres and we tried a two stop strategy," he explained. "The tyres degraded quicker than we hoped and I had to do three stops as well with the last one seven laps before the end."

Before his final unscheduled stop, Kobayashi had haemorrhaged positions to other drivers, and in the end slumped out of the points to 13th place, one place down on his starting position.

With Perez, that plan had been to go "a bit aggressive with the first stop" of three, according to the team's head of track engineering, Giampaolo Dall'Ara. "But the competition reacted, and we could not benefit.

"The key point of the race was on lap one when we lost positions," he continued. "The start was possibly not so good, that's something we have to look into. From that point on we were unable to recover.

"Altogether we were not strong enough today," he concluded, as the team packed up its equipment and headed back to Europe for the Spanish Grand Prix in mid-May.



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