The German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, 22nd to 24th July, is the half time mark in the season and both the Sauber F1 Team drivers have just added new personal records to their tallies – at the British Grand Prix Kamui Kobayashi achieved his best F1 qualifying result by coming eighth, while Sergio Pérez put in his best F1 race result by finishing seventh in Silverstone.
Kamui Kobayashi (car number 16): “I have only raced once at the Nürburgring, and this was when I drove in GP2 in 2009. In those races I finished ninth and third. I remember it being quite a tricky and difficult circuit because it goes up and down quite a lot. Nevertheless, I expect with it being a fast track again, like Silverstone, it should be good for us. We know in high speed corners we are very strong, so hopefully we can show a good performance again. I’m very much looking forward to it. I also like swapping the tracks in Germany as it is nice to have a variety.”
Sergio Pérez (car number 17): “After being in Silverstone, the Nürburgring is another historical race track and, like in the UK, is in another country where I have lived. I am very much looking forward to going back to Germany and having a good race there. For me, after having missed two Grands Prix this year, it is very important now to push forward for the rest of the season and especially before the summer break, which is a very intense period with three races in one month. I also drove on the Nordschleife once in a road car. Obviously it is an amazing track. On the modern circuit one of my favourites is the chicane in the last sector, which I enjoy a lot. I also think the circuit should suit our car quite well and, summing it all up, we should have a good race there.”
James Key, Technical Director: “The Nürburgring is quite a mixed circuit with different features, which makes it hard to characterise. Good braking stability is important into turn one, where there is a potential overtaking opportunity. The first sector is relatively low speed, or at least is after turn one which results in a car which needs good traction and good levels of downforce. Then there is a high speed section down to the hairpin, which presents another overtaking opportunity. The second half to the lap is relatively high speed. Primarily it consists of medium and slow speed corners and a couple of relatively long straights with a chicane in the end and a difficult last corner. This is a challenge for the engineers and drivers to try and get it right particularly in qualifying. It’s going to be an interesting weekend, because there are many different challenges with the big mix of corners and straights. The tyre compounds will be medium and soft. We know the medium tyres were a little tricky in Canada, so we have to work on them. The softs should be okay. The car will continue with the updates we brought to Silverstone, which worked well, and we will have a further small update on the diffuser and the rear brake ducts. After our good performance in Silverstone, we look forward to carrying that momentum forward and trying to score more points in Germany.”