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Sauber says big step ahead is close now after difficult start to 2013

Sauber thinks it could be on the verge of an upswing in form over the second half of the season.

After an encouraging performance in the German Grand Prix, where Nico Hulkenberg delivered a second consecutive point-scoring finish, Sauber thinks it is finally getting to the bottom of the car problems that dogged its start to the campaign.

Sauber also suspects that the switch back to the 2012 construction of tyres from the Hungarian Grand Prix will be a boost to its speed, and team principal Monisha Kaltenborn sees reason for encouragement about its potential.

She told AUTOSPORT: "It is important to know that we are now in a position where we can fight with other cars, we can keep up with them and overtake them.

"That is what we need to take forward - because that gives us the confidence that we have understood the issues, and we have implemented small steps.

"Of course the recent results were small but they are there, but now we want to implement bigger steps to move us in the right direction."

Sauber suspects that one of the biggest factors in its early-season struggles with the C32 was that it failed to get a proper understanding of the aerodynamic influence of the 2013 tyres in its windtunnel modelling.

That is why Kaltenborn is encouraged by the fact that Pirelli is reverting to last year's construction, which the team handled better.

When asked if she hoped that the tyre change would have a knock-on benefit in windtunnel terms, she said: "I do - but on the other hand I have to say it couldn't get much worse than it was before! Anything coming in can only be better.

"But it is still something that we need to understand better. We have to see what the combination of that [2012] construction and this year's compounds is like.

"We have to see how it finally works out, but definitely it is more in to a direction we know."

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