Sauber looking for points tomorrow

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Singapore, Marina Bay Street Circuitsg

Kamui Kobayashi made it into the top ten qualifying for the fourth time this year. The Japanese qualified tenth for the Singapore night race. His new team mate, Nick Heidfeld, who drove the C29 in Singapore for the very first time, qualified 15th.

Kamui Kobayashi:
C29.04 / Ferrari 056
Qualifying: 10th / 1:47.884 min (in Q3) / 3rd Practice: 18th / 1:51.027 min (17 laps)
“I am very happy. I managed to do a couple of good laps in qualifying. In free practice on Friday I didn’t find it easy. For me the track was new and it obviously is a challenging one, as well as a special one with the heat and the lights. But I also wasn’t happy with the car in free practice. The team did a great job in improving it, so in qualifying it was good and I think my result is the best we could achieve today.“

Nick Heidfeld: C29.03 / Ferrari 056
Qualifying: 15th / 1:48.557 min (in Q2) / 3rd Practice: 17th / 1:51.016 min (15 laps)
“I am not completely happy. I hoped for more and I think I didn’t get the most out of the car. But perhaps this wasn’t realistic considering the fact I only drove this car yesterday for the very first time with these tyres. There is a lot to learn and I’m sure we will be benefitting from it soon. I’m not too pessimistic for the race, because the long runs in free practice under race conditions were quite good. Let’s see what we can do tomorrow.“

Peter Sauber, Team Principal: “For Nick it was the first qualifying in this car and with these tyres, neither of which he knew. The result is okay. Tenth for Kamui was a surprise for all of us after the first three practice sessions. Congratulations for a great result! This was the “overture” to Kamui’s home race in Japan in two weeks time.”

James Key, Technical Director: “Overnight we made several set-up changes to the car, with these mostly being mechanical to try to improve the balance we had yesterday, which seemed to be inconsistent for both drivers. There was an improvement to the cars this morning, but we still had a few issues on Kamui’s car to address. That was dealt with for qualifying. Nick was happier with the car but was struggling a bit with traction, which, as well as the kerbs, has been our biggest problem. We weren’t too sure where we were after third free practice. Kamui put in an outstanding lap in Q2 to make it into the top ten qualifying. It was always going to be tough to do that here today, but he extracted the full potential out of the car and the tyres, so it was a great lap. For Nick it was fairly close, but he only had a single lap to get his time because he had a problem on his first lap. He had to learn incredibly quickly this weekend, so the way he got back into qualifying after such a long time was a good job. We saw great work from the team and a fantastic lap from Kamui. I expect we can fight for points tomorrow.”