Sauber targeting top midfield spot in 2019 ‘not unrealistic’ – Ericsson
- November 18, 2019
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Sauber is in the midst of a transformational year, with the Swiss outfit’s performance enjoying a significant step forward after two consecutive lean and mediocre seasons.
The Hinwil-based squad’s improvements – achieved on the back of closer ties with Ferrari and the supply of a current-spec engine from Maranello – lead Marcus Ericsson to believe that racing at the top of the midfield in 2019 is not in the realms of the impossible.
“I think it’s not an unrealistic aim to have,” Ericsson told Crash.net.
“As a team you need to always aim high and I think with the rate of progress we made this year, I think for sure it has to be our target to be in the top of the midfield come next year.
“We have to see but I feel that’s not unrealistic.”
Steiner has ‘no problem’ with Sauber’s closer ties with Ferrari
Having rebuilt its financial foundation and installed new management in the past twelve months, Sauber’s prospects are undoubtedly on the rise, with more to come insists Ericsson.
“I think the potential in this team is massive,” he said.
“If you go to the factory the facilities are great and the wind tunnel is great.
“It’s just a different thing altogether to go to the race weekends compared to the last few seasons because the last two seasons I knew we needed a big crash, we needed the weather to turnaround completely.”
Indeed, the team rarely had its fate in its own hands during those lean and challenging years.
“We needed so many outside things to happen to be able to have a chance to score and that’s a very sad way to go into a race weekend,” explained the Swede.
“You could only compete with your teammate really so that was mentally tough.
“Now we go into a race weekend knowing that if we do everything right we will be there and fight for points on a Sunday.
“If we mess it up and we don’t do a good weekend then we will be at the back probably.
“But we are in that mix and it’s such a nice feeling and it is so motivating as well for me and for the team to know that going into every weekend.
“Also you can see back in the factory as well how much people are motivated and happy to be back fighting.”
Sauber currently stands 9th in the Constructors’ standings, but just ten points behind Toro Rosso, with nine laps to go this year.
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