Sauber has pointed the finger at its drivers after the Swiss team featured low on the list of average pitstop speed in 2011.
According to the pitstop analysis of the 17 F1 races so far, Sauber was ranked equal eighth of the twelve teams, on average 1.3 seconds per pitstop slower than the pacesetter Red Bull.
“Until now, pitstops were one of Sauber’s strongest weapons,” noted veteran Blick correspondent Roger Benoit.
Team boss Beat Zehnder said in Abu Dhabi: “As far as 2011 goes, we have a problem with our drivers. 80 per cent of the time they (Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi) don’t stop at the right place in the box.
“This costs us valuable time. (In India) Perez was about three metres out of place, costing us about three seconds because the whole team has to move position with all the gear. Because of that we lost position to (Force India’s) Sutil.”
Another problem could be Sauber’s perseverance with a ‘lollipop man’, while faster pit crews including Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari and Renault use the automated ‘traffic light’ system.
“The automatic system with sensors brings you half a second, but when it goes wrong it’s damn dangerous,” said Zehnder.