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Sauber drivers Perez and Kobayashi wrap up first half of the season


By Berthold Bouman

Sauber drivers Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi were already looking forward to the traditional Formula One summer break, and halfway the season, they make up the balance. So far it has been a successful year for the Swiss outfit, they are currently sixth in the Constructors’ Championship.

Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi, Sauber

Perez is ninth in the Drivers’ Championship, right behind Romain Grosjean. The Mexican scored two podium places, he was second in Malaysia and third in Canada, and he has also been tipped to replace Felipe Massa at Ferrari next season. “I had some great moments in the first half of the season. It was also a period with ups and downs because we didn’t make the most of every situation,” he said.

Asked about the improvements he made this season he replied, “Having a lot more experience now compared to my rookie season [in 2011] makes me much more confident in many respects. I think I am a lot better than I was when I entered Formula One. This goes especially for when it comes to making decisions with the team.”

But Sauber has also lost points this season, so what are his targets for the second half of the season? “We need to be more efficient and I want to contribute to that. It is not that our performance was not consistent, but we didn’t always get the things right and also we have been unlucky sometimes. We have to get everything together and make the most out of what we have.” And he added, “The car is quick and for me my first victory would be a dream come true!”

Kobayashi is tenth in the Drivers’ Championship and told how he experienced the first half of the season, “Overall we have done a good job and achieved great things. The team built a very good car with an excellent performance. Since the beginning of the season we have been competitive on most tracks, and this means we can be confident for the remainder of the season.”

“But,” he said, “the downside so far has been we definitely missed some opportunities for some more great results. Too often we didn’t manage the weekend perfectly. If we can improve there, a lot will be possible.”

The Japanese driver still has to score his maiden podium finish, but also knows Sauber wants to secure sixth position in the Constructors’ Championship. “On the one hand I want to get my first podium in Formula One, because this is definitely within reach with this car, while on the other we have to focus on our position in the Constructors’ Championship and score points on a regular basis,” he commented.

Both drivers will enjoy a well-deserved vacation, so what are their plans? Kobayashi said, “I haven’t decided yet as first of all I have some events and appointments to attend in Japan. After them I will have a look to find myself a warm place with a beach.” And Perez commented, “For the first two weeks in August I will go with my family to a quiet place in the US. The other two weeks I will be using to prepare myself for the second half of the season because I want to come back strong!”

Video: Long version of the official 2012 Sauber F1 Team season trailer. Dive into the world of motorsports! Turn up the volume and indulge yourself with stunning pictures. Meet our team, take a close look behind the scenes, enjoy a different view of a pit stop and become one with our drivers Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio “Checo” Pérez as they speed along straights and race through tight corners. Video by Sauber Motorsport.

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