Force India disappointed with qualifying performance

Force India's drivers were left disappointed after a difficult qualifying at the Singapore Grand Prix on Saturday, where both the drivers were knocked out in Q2.

Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez finished 11th and 13th respectively at the Marina Bay circuit in a session that yielded a surprise pole for Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel.

"It’s a bit disappointing not to make the top 10," Hulkenberg said after qualifying.

"For whatever reason, we didn’t have the harmony or performance we expected and I wasn’t as happy with the balance as I was yesterday.

"I was chasing the set-up in final practice and we made some changes before qualifying, but we still couldn’t find the sweet spot.

"The car was quite snappy with some oversteer and it wasn’t easy to get a tidy lap together," the German driver added.

While Hulkenberg managed to get a clean lap in Q2 before a yellow flag interruption caused by Carlos Sainz touching the barriers late on, Perez's best lap was cut short because of the incident. 

"I am disappointed as I think Q3 was possible," the Mexican said.

"The yellow flag at the end of Q2 meant I couldn’t finish what would have been my best lap, which is a shame.

"I don’t think P13 reflects our true pace because we’ve done a very good job so far this weekend and we are continuing to take big steps forward," he added.

Optimistic for the race

"Qualifying is only half the battle," team principal Dr. Vijay Mallya said. "We need to be sensible and take our chances to make sure we come away with some good points tomorrow."

The drivers agreed with Mallya and were optimistic of their chances in the race tomorrow.

Underlining the need to get the strategy right, Hulkenberg said: "The strategy decisions will be critical for tomorrow and we’ve seen over the years how unpredictable Singapore can be.

"It’s always a tough race with high tyre degradation, especially the rears, and all the teams around us look quite evenly matched."

Force India's nearest rivals in the constructors' standings, Lotus, have their cars starting 10th (Romain Grosjean) and 18th (Pastor Maldonado) for tomorrow's race.

See also: Full Singapore qualifying results

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Singapore GP
Sub-event Saturday qualifying
Track Singapore Street Circuit
Drivers Nico Hulkenberg , Sergio Perez
Teams Force India
Article type Breaking news
Tags mallya