Mixed Feelings for Sauber Drivers

Sauber duo Jacques Villeneuve and Felipe Massa had mixed reactions to their performance in first qualifying for the Bahrain Grand Prix, after a session of highs and lows for the team

Mixed Feelings for Sauber Drivers

With Massa showing some of the potential of the team's C24 with a run to 10th place on the provisional grid, Villeneuve was again left disappointed when persistent understeer throughout his lap and a mistake at the final corner left him languishing in 16th - some 1.4 seconds off his teammate's time.

"That was a good lap," Said Massa, the only driver in the field to improve on his tiem from the cooler morning free practice. "When you consider our strategy I am very happy with it. I didn't make any mistakes.

"I was a little worried about qualifying, to be honest, but we made a big step forward with the car since this morning and I went quicker even though it was hotter, so I'm feeling good. We know we are going to be stronger in the race, so I hope I can keep close to this place in second qualifying and then be in a position to fight hard tomorrow afternoon."

Villeneuve, whose qualifying performance will have done little to ease the speculation about his future with the team, admitted there was nothing but disappointment about the way his lap had gone.

"A very disappointing qualifying, after the progress we made this morning," he said. "The car was going a lot better for me then than at the previous races, but I picked up a lot of understeer on my qualifying lap and couldn't complete it without going wide in the last corner. Like I said, very disappointing."

Team boss Peter Sauber added: "Felipe did an excellent lap and was the only driver to improve his time from this morning, even though the track temperature went up some 13 degrees. "We are very happy with this result. It gives us another top 10 qualifying position with the C24, which we have been able to improve further since Melbourne.

"Unfortunately, Jacques struggled with understeer after a competitive first sector, which led to him losing more time in the last corner."

Sauber are celebrating their 200th Grand Prix in Bahrain this weekend and are hoping to pick up tomorrow their first points of the season.

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