Peter Sauber has backtracked slightly, having set the scene for his retirement.
The Swiss team’s founder and boss has said numerous times over the last couple of years that “I don’t want to be sitting on the pitwall with my headphones on at 70”. Before the 2012 season is out, he will turn 69.
He has now laid the foundation for Sauber’s future beyond him, handing over a third of the team to future team boss Monisha Kaltenborn, and installing his son Alex as a prominent director.
“I’m going to stay at least until we are able to stabilise the team in a financial sense,” Peter Sauber said last year. “I want to lead the team back into a secure position and establish it at a good level. If I succeed, my mission is fulfilled.”
In the wake of BMW’s shock departure, that time has arguably now arrived, with Sergio Perez bringing solid backing from Mexico and now regularly standing on the podium with the competitive C31 car. But Peter Sauber could be backtracking.
When told about his age-of-70 retirement deadline, Sauber said on Austrian television Servus TV: “The exact date is still unclear.”
He indicated he has thought about the rigours of retirement, and might prefer life in the fast lane after all.
“To watch the races only on television is the worst thing of all,” Sauber smiled.