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Clean changes bear fruit: Good debut for the Aero package

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E in clean at the top of the timesheet. We had that before in the winter tests. And then the Sauber C31 hit the mark in the first few races. On the second day of testing, Kamui Kobayashi led the timesheet with a time of 1.21.603 minutes. Ex aequo with Lotus driver Romain Grosjean.


It was primarily about the exhaust

Head of Sauber technology Matt Morris was satisfied, although a lot of test time was lost on the rainy first day and Kobayashi kept the mechanics busy for an hour with his flight into the gravel trap on the second day to replace the broken underbody. 'We got through the majority of our planned program,' commented Morris. 'The new parts have done what the wind tunnel promised us.'

Sauber had traveled to Mugello with an extensive list of new developments: front wing, baffles, underbody, exhaust, engine cover. The exhaust is now in a duct and points slightly outwards. Morris reveals that the modification is not primarily about the exhaust. 'This is part of a larger package. The entire engine cover has changed. The exhaust is integrated into it.'

On the third day of the test, Sauber experimented with an F-duct based on the Mercedes model. Initially, it was only to clarify questions of principle. Because there was not enough time to install a duct system from the rear to the front wing, a rubber hose was laid to the front from the lower rear wing element. The makeshift passed the outside of the engine cover and stepped under the fairing at the gills next to the cockpit. Destination front wing.

The suspicion that Kobayashi could have achieved the best time of 1.21.603 minutes in one show of strength was denied by Morris: 'I can tell you: That was not a lap with little fuel.' The Englishman sees no form crisis in the last two races. 'Our second place in Malaysia was not a coincidence, which only came about because of the weather. We weren't much worse in terms of speed in Bahrain. It just didn't fit together. And you are much worse off in the tightly packed field . '

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