Sauber to bring further updates to Singapore

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Sauber are set to bring further updates for the C32 car to the Singapore Grand Prix as the team looks to salvage something from the 2013 season.

The Swiss outfit has failed to impress so far this season, scoring just seventeen points and currently lying eighth in the constructors’ championship. Nico Hulkenberg has led the team’s charge, scoring all of the points so far and recording a best finish of fifth at last weekend’s Italian Grand Prix. However, as Sauber look to catch Toro Rosso in the standings, further updates are being brought to Singapore.

“We will bring a further update package to Singapore that should help us to continue fighting for championship points,” Sauber’s head of track engineering Tom McCullough explained in the team’s grand prix preview.

The high-speed nature of Monza seemed to suit Sauber, but with the Marina Bay Street Circuit being a maximum downforce track, the team could struggle.

“Singapore requires a totally different setup philosophy compared to Monza,” McCullough continued. “The circuit efficiency sees a return to our maximum downforce level similar to Monaco. The track is dominated by tight, low-speed corners and this is the area that the mechanical and aero set-up is optimised around.”

Also hoping to impress in Singapore is Esteban Gutierrez, having failed to score his first points in Formula One since debuting at the beginning of the season. The race is renowned for having a high rate of attrition, meaning that drivers who may usually finish outside of the points could take advantage of any retirements and work their way into the top ten.

Hamilton: Abu Dhabi ‘the last race with good-looking cars’ in F1

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Lewis Hamilton believes that this weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will be remembered as the last race with good-looking Formula 1 cars ahead of the introduction of the ‘Halo’ cockpit protection for next year.

Officials from the FIA and F1 Strategy Group confirmed earlier this year that the Halo would be fitted to all cars from the 2018 season in a bid to improve safety standards, with the deaths of Justin Wilson and Jules Bianchi putting head protection high on the agenda for the series’ chiefs.

Hamilton has long made his opposition to the Halo clear, believing it will ruin the look of F1 cars, and echoed his thoughts ahead of the final Halo-less race in Abu Dhabi this weekend.

“It’s the last year of looking good I think in the cars. It’s the last race where the cars will look good,” Hamilton said.

“I think next year, it’s all downhill from there in terms of how they look.

“But safety will go up at least, and maybe it could be successful in some way.”

Hamilton’s F1 title rival Sebastian Vettel was less bothered about the change, believing the field will adjust and move on.

“The cars will look different next year. Everything I’ve seen so far looks different, but on the other hand it is something we all get used to,” Vettel said.

“But no doubt the cars look better now, but we’ll get used to it, and we’ll work on the aesthetics so it can be better. It is less of a big deal.”

Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo shared Vettel’s view, saying: “I don’t think it’s gonna be as dramatic as most people make it out to be.”