Kamui Kobayashi, Daniel Ricciardo, Korea, 2011

Sauber understand Korea struggle

2011 Indian Grand Prix

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Kamui Kobayashi, Daniel Ricciardo, Korea, 2011
Sauber haven't scored in four of the last six races

Sauber say they’ve got to the bottom of the problems they experienced during the Korean Grand Prix.

The C30s were the only cars to pit three times during the race as they struggled with their tyres.

Technical director James Key said: “After our performance in Korea was clearly below our own expectations, we analysed all the data carefully and came to the conclusion that we underestimated the limitation on the front axle and front tyres.

“As a result we suffered from too much understeer, which resulted in over loading the front tyres.”

Key said tyres will be a factor again in India next week as teams have to use the hard tyres, which most teams haven’t raced on since the Spanish Grand Prix:

“We will have the soft and the hard tyre compound there. It?s quite some time since we ran the hard compound, so we?ll have to see how that goes.

“A lot depends on track temperatures, but given the nature of the track with several highly loaded corners, it could be that the hard tyre will warm up okay and last. Maybe the soft will struggle, but you never really know until you?re there.”

Kamui Kobayashi said he’s looking forward to his first visit to India: “It will be my first time in India and I?m very curious to discover a bit about the country.

“Everybody is telling us to be careful with the food. In a way I?m a bit worried about my stomach, but at the same time butter chicken curry is my favourite food and I would love to have it where it comes from.

“Obviously I don?t know the track yet. Maybe I will walk it, although generally I don?t regard track walking as being really very useful. The speed you have when you are on the circuit with the F1 car is so different it changes everything.”

Sergio Perez added he will drive the circuit in Ferrari’s simulator on Monday before the race.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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12 comments on “Sauber understand Korea struggle”

  1. I am not completely sure that explanation makes it easier to understand what problem they had there – F1 tech speak!

    Nice one about Kamui and the Chicken curry, interesting that Perez will be in the Ferrari simulator while Kobayashi will not. Looks like there is a real benefit to get from being in the Ferrari academy.

  2. Seems like such an alien concept to have more than one step between tyre choices. Was the last hard/soft race Silverstone?

    1. given that the last time the hards was used was catalunya, it definitely could not have been silverstone…

    2. @andrewtanner Yes, Silverstone was hard/soft but because of the rain only Paul di Resta used the hards in the race:

      2011 British Grand Prix pit stops and tyres used

  3. As Sauber don’t have their own simulator, do you think Kamui will be putting a few laps in on F1 2011 before Friday? I know it tells you nothing about the car, but it does teach you about the track – or would that be counter-productive?

    1. AFAIK they do have one, but not a top level one a la Ferrari, McLaren or Williams. Still should be better than F1 2011! I don’t think they laser scanned the track so I expect the game’s times and track feel will differ greatly from reality. More than it does for known circuits.

  4. I that a chunk of tyre flying off in the top left of the image? Blimey.

    1. @john-h Not sure, but it could be part of his front wing from the contact he made in the race when he was squeezed into turn 3. Whatever it is, it’s big!

  5. Haha, I liked Kamui’s comments, but is he missing out if he’s enjoying his curry while the other drivers are out examining the track…As Webber says in the Red Bull preview, the kerbs etc are last-minute additions at a new track.

  6. Isn’t it true that in a foreign country, you just have to take one sip of water the first day, a glass the next and then you’re free to eat whatever you want? Because then your body’s adjusted to the bacteria?

    1. No, better not try that one unless you don’t mind having a couple of rough days, or worst.

    2. Well, I haven’t heard that before from anyone, but methinks that’d work if you go from say Canada to New Zealand. But hey, with all due respect, we’re talking about India here.

      I’m from Malaysia and went there 3 years back with my whole family and throughout the duration of our 10 day stay we drank bottled water. Of course, we drank their normal water on a couple of occasions, and it tastes like butter!

      Still, if there’s one thing you have to take care of in India above anythings else, it’s what you take in – both food and water.

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