• Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Kobayashi's points 'extremely valuable' for Sauber

ESPN Staff
November 4, 2012 « New chassis made a difference - di Resta | Nico Rosberg - Accident was unavoidable »
Kamui Kobayashi held off Felipe Massa and Bruno Senna for sixth place © Sutton Images

Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn said Kamui Kobayashi's points for sixth place in Abu Dhabi are "very valuable" for the team in its battle with Mercedes.

Kobayashi scored eight points while neither Mercedes managed to score, leaving the teams just 12 points apart in the battle for fifth place in the constructors' championship. It had been far from a smooth race for Kobayashi as he dealt with a technical issue and Kaltenborn described his performance as "fantastic".

"Kamui had a fantastic race," Kaltenborn told ESPN exclusively. "First of all he stayed out of all these kind of trouble and secondly he himself had a technical trouble pretty much from the beginning of the race. He coped very well with it because he had an issue with his downshift and that resulted eventually in not having the full power in his recovery system.

"He had a bit of a handicap and still towards the end could keep the cars which were coming at quite a fast rate close to him behind him. I think he fought once again very well and gave us extremely valuable points."

Kobayashi himself admitted that it had been tough for him to deal with the problem, but said he was looking forward to fighting Mercedes in the final two races of the season.

"It was a very tough race and I am really happy I was able to get those eight points for the team," Kobayashi said. "To fight for fifth place in the constructors' championship in the remaining two races will be very exciting.

"Unfortunately today I could not use the full performance of the car. There was a problem with downshifting, which meant I could not recharge the KERS properly and didn't have full boost. Otherwise my race went well. I had a good start, while the team did a great job in terms of timing, strategy and the pit stop."

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