Force India: The long run pace was encouraging

Sergio Perez

Sergio Perez

Sahara Force India enjoyed a productive day of practice ahead of Sunday’s Austrian Grand Prix;

Nico Hulkenberg  VJM07-04:

  • FP1:     1:12.072        (P7)       20 laps
  • FP2:     1:11.935        (P17)     39 laps

“It’s a fun track. Quite a short lap, but it flows nicely. It looks easier on paper because in reality it’s quite challenging and technical in many areas. The morning session was very solid; I was happy with the car straight away and the performance was there. For some reason we struggled more this afternoon on both tyre compounds and I was not as comfortable in the car: so that is where we need to analyse things tonight. One explanation could be the wind, which picked up this afternoon, but we will look deep into the data to make sure that
we improve things for tomorrow.”

Sergio Perez VJM07-02:

  • FP1:     1:12.009          (P6)     33 laps
  • FP2:     1:11.296          (P13)   36 laps

“It was a good day. We followed our programme and managed to learn a lot about the way both tyre compounds behave over long runs. The track is very challenging and it doesn’t offer many overtaking opportunities, so grid position will be crucial for a successful weekend. There are still good margins of improvement we can extract: getting everything out of the car and doing the necessary changes to use the tyres in the best way will be our main objectives for tonight.”

Otmar Szafnauer, Chief Operating Officer: “It’s been a busy day with both drivers having to learn a new track and an aero evaluation programme across both cars, which went to plan. Nico was happy with the car balance this morning, but the set-up direction we took in the afternoon, and the changing conditions, resulted in him struggling to find performance. The opposite was true with Sergio who made some progress in the afternoon, but it’s fair to say we need to work hard tonight to optimise car balance on both sides of the garage. The long run pace was encouraging, but as always it’s tricky to make comparisons. Hopefully the changes we make overnight will allow us to move closer to the sweet spot so that we are in good shape ahead of Qualifying.”

(Force India F1)