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Esteban Gutierrez wants to become team leader at Sauber in F1 2014

Esteban Gutierrez

Esteban Gutierrez has set his sights on emerging as the leader of the Sauber Formula 1 team in 2014.

The 22-year-old Mexican is only in his second season in F1 and will be partnered this season by Adrian Sutil, who already has six full campaigns under his belt.

But Gutierrez, who claimed only one points finish last year with seventh place at the Japanese Grand Prix believes that the experience gained during his rookie season with the Swiss squad puts him in a good position.

"I want to achieve being a leader for the team," said Gutierrez.

"This is my second year now as a race driver in Formula 1 so with experience and generally a lot of new things coming up, I think that my involvement with the team is very important so that we can meet our expectations.

"As a driver, I want to take the next step. I think my approach can be very different to last year and I am really in full fighting mood.

"I prepared through the off-season, analysing and evaluating everything that happened in my rookie season to take that into the new season."

Sauber launches its 2014 F1 car

Gutierrez believes that the experience gained during his first year will allow him to master the strategic demands of 2014.

With new 1.6-litre V6 turbocharged engines and a fuel limit of 100kg for the race, fuel management will be key to success.

"As a driver you have to get involved in the strategy with the team in a very specific way," said Gutierrez.

"In my rookie season, I always found myself a little bit confused at the beginning but through the season I got very well into a rhythm to understand things.

"Now that it is my second season, I think I can be more efficient, more involved and to give more input from a driver's point of view to make things work properly together with the team."

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