Next weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix is set to provide Sauber with its best chance of scoring some points in the 2014 F1 season as the team looks to avoid its worst ever year in the sport.
The Swiss outfit currently ranks P10 in the constructors’ championship without a single point to its name, as both Esteban Gutierrez and Adrian Sutil have struggled to work with the C33 car.
However, the tight and technical nature of the Marina Bay Street Circuit in Singapore should mask some of the weaknesses the car has, while a high rate of attrition could also work in the team’s favor.
“In terms of track layout, I think the characteristics will suit the C33,” Gutierrez said. “We have been working intensely on the mechanical set-up of the car, which will be crucial on this circuit, as the track has many tight corners and only a few short straights.
“I am really looking forward to the weekend, and especially to geting the maximum out of the updates to the car we are having there. It is going to be an interesting race, and there is a realistic chance for a positive result.”
Adrian Sutil agreed with his teammate, saying: “Sheer engine power is not crucial here, rather a high mechanical grip is important because of the many tight corners. Good stability of the car as well as high downforce will be essential, as the circuit has several kerbs and is quite bumpy in some places.
“I think we will have the best chance for a better result there.”
The race is one of the most exuberant and glamorous in Formula 1, given that it starts at 10pm local time and is run under floodlights. However, Sauber will know that if it does not pick up some points next weekend, its chances of doing so before the end of the season will be very slim indeed as the remaining five circuits appear to work against the C33 car.
Sauber’s worst season to date came in 1999, when Jean Alesi and Pedro Diniz amassed just five points across the course of the year.