Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn has said that Esteban Gutierrez needs to focus on improving his performances after a disappointing start to the season.
The Mexican driver has failed to score in 2013, with a best result of P12 in Malaysia, but Kaltenborn has acknowledged that the C32 car has made life difficult for Gutierrez.
“A lot has to do with the performance of the car,” Kaltenborn explained to Autosport. “You have to be careful not to start making assessments after four races, but yes, we have to keep a very close eye on him and see if the expectations are satisfied or not.
“We have no doubts about his mental capabilities to get on top of things and understand them.”
However, Kaltenborn, who became the first female team principal in the sport last season, has urged Gutierrez to up his game and match the form of teammate Nico Hulkenberg.
“He is struggling at the moment with his performance. So we need to try to focus on get that potential out because we know it’s there.
“The consistency is not there now. Of course we can say that when you hire a rookie driver you can’t expect that at this stage. I think after four races it’s far too early to make that kind of assessment.”
Gutierrez endured a disastrous race in Bahrain, finishing behind the Caterham of Charles Pic in 18th place. However, if he can become the first rookie in 2013 to score points, it could go a long way to silencing any critics.