Sahara Force India faced a double retirement from the Hungarian Grand Prix, which the team feels came as an eye-opener to them.
A front wing failure on Nico Hulkenberg’s car led to his retirement while Sergio Perez was forced to retire after suffering brake issues in Budapest.
Technical Director, Andrew Green described the Hungary incident as a “shock” to the team which gave them a “shot in the arm”.
“If we hadn’t had the issues in Hungary, we were racing well there,” said Green to the reporters on Friday.
“We’ve learned from that, we’re moving forwards.”
Aim to beat Red Bull
The Indian outfit sits fifth in the championship with 39 points while Red Bull’s double podium in Hungary meant they stretched out a healthy lead of 57 points in the championship.
However, the team is optimistic of their chances and wants to stay close to the four-time champions.
“We’re looking to start moving ahead of the guys behind us, and looking to see if we can stay on the coat tails of Red Bull to a certain degree,” Green added.
“I think once we get to Singapore, we’ll start to begin to understand where this car actually sits.
“That’s where we plan to bring the last of this current suite of updates to the track,” Green said revealing the team’s upgrade plans.
Despite the red flag interruptions, the team was happy with their Friday’s work. Together Hulkenberg (12th in FP1 & sixth in FP2) and Perez (ninth in FP1 & 11th in FP2) completed a total of 82 laps.
“The car felt pretty good and I am fairly happy with the baseline set-up. I think we’re in a good place going into the weekend,” Hulkenberg said.
Perez too sounded positive about the day: “It was a really a productive day, we took two very different set-up directions with the two cars and were able to get some good information.”