Force India put themselves in position to come away with a decent points haul this weekend at Bahrain after both Paul di Resta and Adrian Sutil raced their way into Q3 during Saturday’s qualifying at Sakhir.
Di Resta (pictured) and Sutil qualified seventh and eighth respectively in the final round, but by virtue of the grid penalties for both Lewis Hamilton (five spots for changing a gearbox after a tire/suspension failure in FP3) and Mark Webber (three spots for his incident in China with Jean-Eric Vergne), the duo will move up and have Row 3 all to themselves when the lights go out: Di Resta going off from fifth, Sutil from sixth.
“As the tracked gripped up, we didn’t quite have the speed we expected, but I’m still pretty happy with what we’ve achieved…We’re in a great position for tomorrow,” said Di Resta. “The car is strong and our long run performance yesterday gives us every reason to be hopeful of challenging for some good points.”
Sutil said that he too also had his issues with grip around the Bahrain International Circuit, but was also confident that Sunday would be a good day for his outfit.
“The track suits us, we like the warm weather and things look promising for tomorrow,” he said. “It’s a good starting position to have both cars on the third row and we will be looking to move forward in the race.”
Deputy team principal Robert Fernley believed that tires would not be an issue for his camp and indicated the keys were staying out of traffic and capitalizing on the VJM06’s abilities over long runs.
“We have no concern with the tyres, so the key tomorrow is to hold track position and find some clean air with the strategy so that we can make the most of our strong race pace,” he said.