The Sahara Force India Formula One Team did themselves a favor on Saturday in their race for fourth place in the championship.
Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg will start Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix at the Sepang circuit from seventh and eighth place respectively. Perez, who will continue with the Silverstone based outfit next season set a fastest time of 01:34.319s and speaking following the session the Mexican commented by saying:
I’m very happy with our performance. It was very important to execute a perfect qualifying session and I think that is what we did. It was a mega effort by the whole team. The whole qualifying hour was very intense because you could see how close together the laptimes were for all the cars and I had to maximise each lap. I made a little mistake in Q2 on my last run, which could have cost me a place in Q3, but fortunately I managed to make it through. The result today means we are in a great position to fight for strong points tomorrow.
Sahara Force India go into Sunday’s race in fourth place in the championship, just one point ahead of the Williams Martini Racing team. Speaking following the session, Force India deputy team principal Robert Fernley commented by saying:
An extremely satisfying performance today, which sets us up nicely for a strong race tomorrow. The team has done an excellent job of dialling the car into this circuit and both drivers delivered clean laps when it mattered. Locking out the fourth row of the grid is a fair reflection of the speed we have in the car and I’m optimistic we can race well to bring home some important points.
Nico Hulkenberg will start Sunday’s race from eighth place on the grid having set a qualifying time of 01:34.489s and speaking following the session, the German commented by saying:
I am quite satisfied with how today went and my starting position for the race. When the top three teams lock out the first three rows, seventh and eighth is the best we could have achieved. In the end, my lap was not good enough for P7: I felt a bit more comfortable and had a better rhythm at the start of the session and it fell away slightly in Q3 – perhaps the track cooled and that’s one of the possibilities we will try to understand tonight. Still, eighth is a very good position to start tomorrow’s race. It’s going to be really close behind the leaders: I hope we can keep up with the cars in front and take the opportunity if anything happens. Our priority is to stay inside the points and maximise what we can get out of this race.