Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson expect Sauber to be more competitive at the Chinese Grand Prix following a scoreless start to the season.

The Bahrain Grand Prix saw both cars outqualified by Pascal Wehrlein’s Manor, with only Ericsson going on to beat the German to 12th place in the race. Nasr struggled with his car on a circuit where Sauber proved uncompetitive but the Brazilian is confident Shanghai will play more towards the C35’s strengths.

“My first Formula One race weekend at the Shanghai International Circuit was quite positive last year,” Nasr said. “We improved the car during the whole weekend and, after a top ten qualifying, I finished the race in eighth.

“Looking back to the Bahrain Grand Prix about a week ago, I hope that the team was able to sort out the issues I had with the C35. The objective is clearly to be more competitive. I am looking forward to the Chinese Grand Prix as the track characteristics should suit our car.”

Ericsson was happier with his performance in Bahrain despite the final result, and he believes it provides Sauber with a platform from which to improve this weekend.

“The Chinese Grand Prix brings back good memories from last season,” Ericsson said. “We had a strong race weekend there, finishing with both cars in the points. I put in a good performance with some nice battles on track. In the end I saw the chequered flag in P10.

“For this year’s race weekend on the Shanghai International Circuit, I feel confident that we can build up our performance from Bahrain and make another step forward there.”

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