Atlas F1 News Service

Sauber Confident of Holding On to Fourth in 2002

Monday November 12th, 2001

The Sauber team are confident they will be able to hold on to fourth place in the Constructors' Championship next season after a successful 2001.

The Swiss outfit, powered by one-year old Ferrari engines, were able to finish ahead of both the official Honda-powered teams Jordan and BAR this season, enjoying their best campaign since their Formula One debut back in 1993, scoring 22 points.

German Nick Heidfeld will stay with Sauber in 2002, and being partnered by Brazilian rookie Felipe Massa, he is confident the Hinwil-based team will be able to continue with their progress.

"Obviously fourth place for last season was fantastic and it's going to be tough, but I'm quite confident we can hold it," said Heidfeld. "It's quite difficult to be top six all the time so if we have a chance to be close to that, it's a lot more fun than just being at 12th or 15th position. But it is quite a long-term job."

20-year old Massa, this year's European F3000 champion, is also confident Sauber will do well in 2002, but the young Brazilian is under no illusions about the task ahead.

"I am sure we will do as well, but I still have a lot to learn from Nick and about F1," Massa said. "I don't want to feel pressured, it's not so good for a driver so I just want to concentrate on my work."

Published at 14:03:22 GMT

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