Formula 1 - Caterham: Finish no guarantee of points

Caterham says that it cannot take it for granted that just making it to the finish at the Australian Grand Prix will guarantee it its first Formula 1 points.

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Formula 1 - Caterham: Finish no guarantee of points
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BAHRAIN, BAHRAIN - FEBRUARY 21: Marcus Ericsson of Sweden and Caterham drives during day three of Formula One Winter Testing at the Bahrain International Circuit on February 21, 2014 in Bahrain, Bahrain. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Following the high level of reliability problems suffered by all teams in pre-season testing, a high attrition rate has been predicted for the start of the new F1 season.

However, Caterham team principal Cyril Abiteboul says that simply expecting to take home points by making it to the chequered flag would be a mistake.

He is adamant that by the time the teams arrive in Melbourne next week they will all be in far better shape than they have shown so far.

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"We need to be a bit careful about that," he told AUTOSPORT about the prospect of picking up points by completing the race in Australia.

"F1 has this capacity in that you are very, very quickly coming with a product that is not far from being perfect.

"It is an industry where, while zero default is not standard, it is not far from standard.

"It is a bit like in the airline industry - you cannot afford to send off a plane and see if it will crash. It has to fly and it has to land.

"It is the bit like that in F1. I would not be surprised if by Melbourne the reliability level will have dramatically increased."

However, despite thinking that scoring points will still be difficult for those that do get to the finish, he thinks the way the race pans out in Australia could throw up its fair share of surprises still.

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"What I think is the race will be strange," he said. "One thing you cannot test before you actually do it is the race.

"Yes, you can do a race simulation, but you are not racing against anyone except the lap time.

"Until you are racing against the others, in particular, finding the right trade off between properly racing the other cars, preserving energy and preserving fuel, you do not know how it works in reality.

"So I think reliability wise a jump will be made, but in terms of the way the race will unfold, it might be extremely interesting."

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