Esteban Gutierrez has said that his true ability behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car was not reflected during his time at Sauber due to the quality of the cars produced by the team, but believes that the experience has put him in a good place for finding another role in F1 in the future.
Gutierrez left Sauber following the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix last weekend, making way for Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson after two years at the Swiss team.
During his time at Sauber, Gutierrez scored points on just one occasion, finishing seventh at the 2013 Japanese Grand Prix. Along with teammate Adrian Sutil, he failed to record a single top ten finish this year.
In Abu Dhabi last week, Gutierrez was asked by MotorSportsTalk whether he felt that his true ability had been shrouded by the circumstances he was working under, and admitted that although this was true, the experience has helped him.
“Yes I believe so,” Gutierrez said. “It’s not for me to talk about it, because obviously there is a lot of work behind the scenes which probably not many people realize.
“In my first year, I was a rookie, and there were many things happening which put me in a very stressful situation. Even then, I was able to show good performances in the second half of the year.
“Then I come into my second year when I can show my full performance and potential, and I find myself in a team that has gone a lot backwards and isn’t really in a position to show anything from my capabilities.
“Many times I did really great laps in qualifying, also really good races, but from the outside it’s not something you can really realize, because obviously the result is the result, and that’s what we need to accept.
“That’s why I am looking to be in a position to prove myself and show my capabilities, because I think these two years with the experience of the position I’ve been in, I think it’s a great place for my future in Formula 1.
“I don’t regret anything. Obviously there are always things I could have done better, not only on my side but from the team, other things could have happened better. In life, you cannot control everything. That’s how destiny is. Things happen for a reason. I have to move on, I have to keep fighting.”
Gutierrez is targeting a reserve role with a bigger team in F1 next season, and revealed that he has an offer that would see him take part in a number of practice sessions across the course of the year before trying to get a full-time seat again in 2016.