Sauber Petronas Malaysian Grand Prix preview Willy Rampf (Technical Director): "The Malaysian Grand Prix is naturally a very important event for us, since it is the home race for our main partner and engine supplier Petronas. Following our ...
Sauber Petronas Malaysian Grand Prix preview
Willy Rampf (Technical Director):
"The Malaysian Grand Prix is naturally a very important event for us, since it is the home race for our main partner and engine supplier Petronas. Following our performance in Melbourne and Heinz Harald's sixth place finish, we will be seeking to score more points with both cars. The Sepang circuit has its two distinctive long straights, which of course offer overtaking opportunities."
"The track also offers turns in a very wide speed range, from one first gear turn at 70 km/h to a demanding high speed turn at 240 km/h. You also need good traction here because of the tricky uphill hairpin left-hander at Turn Nine and good car balance for the high speed sweeps. Single-lap qualifying is going to be challenging here. Due to the very hot climatic conditions, sufficient engine cooling is one of the key factors to finish the race. We know that the Sauber Petronas C22 is an improvement over the C21, which proved very well suited to the track last year, so we are optimistic as we head 'home'."
Nick Heidfeld (51 GPs):
"I really like Malaysia, and of course the Malaysian GP is a very important one for Team Sauber Petronas. Last year the Australian GP didn't last very long for me. I was eliminated in the accident at the first corner on the opening lap. This year I only managed 21 laps. But in 2002 I went on to score points in Malaysia and we know from Melbourne that the Sauber Petronas C22 is a very competitive and reliable car. I am really looking forward to scoring the first World Championship points of my 2003 season in front of our friends at Petronas and the Malaysian fans. The new regulations will be more familiar and we know better what to expect. I think we will be in good shape."
Heinz-Harald Frentzen (142 GPs, three points 2003):
"The Sepang track is a mixture of Nurburgring and Jerez. The surface is very smooth, there are lots of corners and plenty of straights. It's a good challenge for us. Malaysia is an interesting country and I'd like to visit some of the resorts after the Grand Prix. I am very much looking forward to our 'home' race because the Malaysian people are so enthusiastic about the team and always give Team Sauber Petronas an extremely warm welcome."