Adrian Sutil (car 20, VJM01/06): DNF 11:04.117 (Puncture) Fastest lap: 1:21.189 Giancarlo Fisichella (car 21, VJM01/05): DNF 29:15.954 (Gearbox) Fastest lap: 1:21.577 The Japanese Grand Prix race weekend that started so full of promise ...
Adrian Sutil (car 20, VJM01/06):
DNF 11:04.117 (Puncture)
Fastest lap: 1:21.189
Giancarlo Fisichella (car 21, VJM01/05):
DNF 29:15.954 (Gearbox)
Fastest lap: 1:21.577
The Japanese Grand Prix race weekend that started so full of promise ultimately ended in disappointment for both Force India Formula One Team drivers.
Adrian Sutil and Giancarlo Fisichella made electric starts away from their respective starting positions of 19th and 20th, both staying clear of the chaos of the first corner. Adrian continued his strong progress, scything his way up to 10th position before a sudden tyre failure on lap nine on the long pit straight led to his retirement.
Giancarlo too pushed through the field and was enjoying a tight battle with the Williams of Rosberg for 12th position. His race was also to come to a premature end however following a problem with the gearbox of his VJM01 on lap 21.
Adrian Sutil (car 20)
'I had a puncture on my right rear tyre and then suddenly on the straight the tyre blew and I had to stop the car. It was a shame as we were running 10th and it was feeling really good. We had a fantastic start - from 19th to 11th at the end of the first corner as I stayed to the inside and clear of all the problems, and I was in 10th position within a couple of laps. It was going very well and we had a good strategy, it was just so unlucky again.'
Giancarlo Fisichella (car 21)
'The start off the grid was fantastic for me and I could overtake a lot of people. In the first corner there were a lot of cars across and off the track and a lot of mess, so they slowed down a lot and I touched Barrichello at the back of his car and I damaged my front nose slightly. I decided to stay out and it was looking good. We were considering a one stop strategy which was much more comfortable and I was doing a good race, but then unfortunately at the end I had a problem with the gearbox and seventh gear. At least we are fighting again.'
Mike Gascoyne, chief technical officer
'Today was a shame for the team as I think we had every chance of doing very well. Adrian had a good first lap and on a two stop strategy it was looking promising for the rest of the race. Unfortunately he picked up a puncture, which was the end of his race. Giancarlo was also putting in a strong performance despite some contact in the first corner, which damaged his nose and gave some understeer as a result. He was on a one stop strategy, but had a gearbox failure just before the mid point of the race. While it was a great shame for the team, it's good to see a strong race pace once again.'
Dr Vijay Mallya, chairman and managing director
'This weekend has been another mixed event for us. Adrian was driving an excellent race and there was high potential there for him to score points, as he did last year, but then our luck ran out. Giancarlo too was very strong and unfortunately had a mechanical problem. We have however proved yet again that we are strong contenders and can fight hard with the other teams, all we need now is a bit of a break.'
-credit: force india