Motorsport News - F1
Challenging Italian GP Qualifying for Sauber
8th September 2012
It was clear from the beginning that the famous high speed circuit of Monza would be challenging for the Sauber C31-Ferrari. Both Sauber F1 Team drivers, Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Prez, were fighting hard. Kamui managed to go through to Q3 and qualified 9th. For Sergio it didnt work out as well, as he qualified 13th for tomorrows Italian Grand Prix.
Weather: sunny and dry, 25-28C air, 32-40C track
Sauber C31-Ferrari (Chassis 02/Ferrari 056)
Qualifying: 9th in Q3 (1:25.109 min / new medium tyres)
3rd practice: 15th (1:25.689 min / new medium tyres / 22 laps)
Well we dont have the same pace here as we did last week in Spa, which made it a tough qualifying. Having said this, I am happy to have reached the first target which was to get through to Q3. Friday was pretty difficult because a mechanical problem prevented me from doing the mileage I would have wanted, and this is also why I cannot really make any predictions on how the race will go. I lack the experience of proper long runs. After the third free practice session this morning we changed the cars settings quite a lot and this paid off in qualifying, I got confidence in the car back. My lap time in Q2 was really good - half a second quicker than in Q3 - and to me this was the maximum possible. However, it was a shame I didnt manage to improve on my second lap during the final attempt. I want to get a strong race result tomorrow.
Sauber C31-Ferrari (Chassis 03/Ferrari 056)
Qualifying: 13th in Q2 (1:24.901 min / new medium tyres)
3rd practice: 7th (1:25.160 min / new medium tyres / 23 laps)
We knew it would be tight to make it into the top ten today, but I was fighting hard. We have improved the car quite a lot since Friday, but we are clearly not as quick here as we were in Belgium. On my last attempt in Q2 unfortunately I was driving too close behind Bruno Senna and could not improve my lap time. I lost two tenths of a second in the first sector. I didnt want to back off to make a bigger gap because I didnt want to compromise the warm up of my tyres. The tyre compounds here are quite similar and we dont expect high degradation, but in the end, given the high temperatures, you never really know. I am very optimistic about scoring good points here in tomorrows race.
Monisha Kaltenborn, CEO:
We are quite happy with the qualifying result, because we knew the Monza track characteristics would be challenging for our car. However, we are in a good starting position and are looking forward to a strong race.
Giampaolo DallAra, Head of Track Engineering:
In the morning we had to make up some ground which we lost yesterday. We found some good directions for the car. In qualifying we made it quite easiliy through Q1,and then it was really down to the drivers. Our performance was very close to some other competitors, so it was really a matter of fractions to be in or out of the top ten and so be further up or back down the grid. Im confident we can have a good race from these positions.
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