Kamui Kobayashi and Nick Heidfeld were both unhappy with the balance of their Sauber cars after the two Friday practice sessions in Abu Dhabi. Both drivers complained of balance issues and admitted they were struggling for pace. Having been eighth and 10th in the afternoon, they fell to 14th and 16th this evening.
"It looked OK in the beginning of both free practice sessions, but for some reason there was no improvement and we were struggling," Kobayashi explained.
His teammate Nick Heidfeld echoed those grievances, saying: "The first session wasn't bad but in the second free practice I was very unhappy with the balance of my car."
Sauber technical director James Key was unable to provide reasons for this lack of pace
"We need to work hard on the third sector, because we are losing a lot there, and we have to understand why," Key said. "It's not just down to the downforce level."
Despite today's disappointment, both drivers are remaining optimistic for the last race of the season.
"I'm positive we will find solutions for tomorrow," Kobayashi said. Heidfeld agreed, adding that practice form did not necessarily set the tone for the whole weekend.
"Luckily, it is only Friday and we have time to work that out," he said.