After yet another wretched Grand Prix weekend, team boss Peter Sauber had Sauber Ferrari engine failureconfirmed what we all knew already: the Sauber C29 is a bit of a lemon.

However, the newly-returned Team Principal also added that he is unhappy with the poor reliability of its customer Ferrari engines.

“Five problems with the Ferrari engine in eight races is unacceptable. At this rate we will need more than eight engines per driver for the season!” he exclaimed to Swiss newspaper Blick. “We need better reliability.”

Pedro de la Rosa retired from last weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix with – you guessed it – another engine blow-up (pictured).

Ferrari has been given special dispensation by the FIA to make changes to its engine construction after a systemic reliability issue was uncovered in engines used by both the works team and Sauber.

Ferrari test driver Marc Gené is equally baffled by these engine issues being experienced by Sauber, and wrote about it in his latest comment with the Spanish newspaper El Mundo.

“Ferrari has solved its problems with the engines but Sauber has again had a failure,” he writes. “It is an issue that will be analysed thoroughly by the team.

“Two months ago there was a basic reason, but now … it is very strange,” he added. “They will need to work to analyse it with Ferrari.”

What has certainly been interesting is that Ferrari’s other customer team – Toro Rosso – hasn’t experienced a single issue with its identical Ferrari powerplants, which would lead one (Gené included) to speculate that the issue could be a cooling or installation problem with the Sauber C29 chassis itself.

“It is surprising that Toro Rosso [has] never had a problem,” the Spaniard added.

[Original image via Sutton Images]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.