Monisha Kaltenborn Fears Sauber Will Struggle in 2016

Sauber team principle Monisha Kaltenborn fears that the team may struggle to score any points throughout the 2016 season thanks to the Manor team switching to Mercedes power and the addition of Haas F1 to the grid in what resembles a Ferrari junior team.

Sauber have had a pretty consistent season them set to finish eighth in the constructor’s championship ahead of both McLaren and Manor but with the inclusion of Haas next year, the change of power unit for Manor and the expected improvement of McLaren they could find themselves at the bottom of the pile for the 2016 season. As a team that runs with its finances on a knife-edge if they were to finish bottom they may no longer be able to sustain their F1 future and we could see Sauber drop off the grid for the following season as a result.

Monisha had the following to say: 

“I am, in principle, happy because we have, in many ways, come back to where we usually are, but I think there is more potential there which we have to utilise next year, so I’m not totally happy, We have Manor coming in with a new [engine] tie-up, and we have a new team coming in which, we learned from the media, has had intensive co-operation with another team, so it’s going to be very tough to score a point. I think you’ll really have to do that on your own because a lot will have to go wrong [for others] for you to be there and score a point.”

Not only have Manor managed to secure themselves Mercedes power for next season they will also be entering in to a technical partnership with Williams which will result in Manor being allow to use Williams gearbox parts as well as other technical advantages. Both of these deals led many including myself to the conclusion Manor could and should be regular points scorers next year. 

It is very rare a team comes on to the grid and in their first season they score regular points but with the close relationship that seems to be blossoming between Ferrari and Haas that could be about to change. As it stands Haas F1 will start next season with as many Ferrari components as is allowed under the Sporting Regulations. Haas has to own the IP for its monocoque, survival cell, roll structure, bodywork, wings, floor and diffuser, but all other components will be supplied by Ferrari as part of the technical deal with Maranello. As well as the engine and technical partnership, Haas has also been granted the use of Ferrari’s wind tunnel which has been crucial in the production of their 2016 car according to various reports from inside the team. 

So with only ten points paying positions and 22 cars on the grid next season Monisha may have very valid concerns but only time will tell just how competitive Haas and Manor turn out to be

By: Chris Laker
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