British Grand Prix: Force India previews Silverstone
24 June, 2013
Sahara Force India looks forward to round eight of the season at Silverstone.
Team Principal, Dr Vijay Mallya, looks forward to the team’s local race.
There is always something special about racing at Silverstone. After the Indian Grand Prix, we regard Silverstone as our second ‘home’ race. Our headquarters is just across the road and everyone in the team feels a touch of pride in racing on what we consider ‘our’ turf. It is also a special place, the venue where the very first Formula One World Championship race was held and one which can boast some of the most passionate fans in the world.
Two exciting races in Monaco and Canada have set us up perfectly for this weekend’s event. We celebrated our 100th race in Canada and continued picking up points with both cars. That’s what we need to do if we are to hold on to fifth place in the championship. While I still believe that we are edging ever closer to the podium, we must also focus on consistency and play the long game in the championship, which means scoring points at every race.
In the past we’ve never had great success at Silverstone, so we are keen to put that right this year. It’s a home race for Paul and I’m sure the whole team can count on lots of support from the British fans. Performance-wise, I expect us to be competitive. We have a couple of small upgrades so I’m optimistic that we can be fighting for our usual position inside the top ten.
Paul on Silverstone
Paul, you’ve been in the points in six out of seven races – that’s some good consistency…
I think we can be pretty happy with that. All things considered we’ve managed to get some good results and kept up our momentum. The last two results, in particular, felt very satisfying, especially because we managed to get the strategy spot on to come through the field. These results set us up nicely for this weekend, which is a massive one for everyone in the team.
Tell us about your emotions ahead of the weekend…
It’s always a highlight of the year. When I was young I dreamed about coming to Silverstone as a Formula One driver so it’s always a very special weekend. As a venue it’s spectacular with some of the greatest corners of the year and the atmosphere is just incredible. The place is packed all weekend and the buzz from the fans gives you so much energy.
What are your expectations for the race?
With the way our car is working these tyres at the moment, we are looking really healthy. I believe this car is the best we’ve ever had and everyone in the team is working hard to squeeze even more performance from it. The key for Silverstone is to hopefully get three successful days in a row on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. That’s what we did in Bahrain and it really paid off. If we can do it at Silverstone, then hopefully we can make a big impact on the race.
Adrian on Silverstone
Adrian, after points in the last couple of races you must be feeling positive ahead of Silverstone…
I think it was important to have these results, especially the fifth place in Monaco, because it helps you forget some of the missed opportunities from earlier in the season. Canada was another race where we had good speed and considering everything that happened to me during the race it was good to come away with a point. As a team we’ve shown just how competitive we can be, but I feel there is still much more to come.
Silverstone is loved by most drivers – are you a fan of the track?
It’s not my top favourite, but it’s a great place to drive an F1 car. It’s fast and flowing, so it’s quite a big change from Monaco and Canada, but I’m confident that we can go there and perform well. I enjoy the high-speed sections and also the newer start of the lap, which definitely makes it easier to overtake compared to the old layout.
It’s a local and busy race for the team – what is your plan for the week?
I will be in the UK for the whole week. There’s a simulator session on Wednesday to prepare for the weekend and I will be spending a lot of time at the factory. It’s a good chance to spend more time with the team members who don’t come to races. (Force India)
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