Vijay Mallya: "To have Nico and Checo within a thousandth of a second of each other shows that they really pushed the car to its limit."
Sahara Force India will line up in P14 and P15 for tomorrow’s Australian Grand Prix with Nico Hulkenberg ending today’s qualifying session in P14, just one thousandth of a second ahead of teammate Sergio Perez.
Nico Hulkenberg (Q2: 1:29.208 - P14): “We always want to be further up the grid, but being realistic I don’t think we had the performance today to challenge for Q3. However, it’s only the first qualifying session of the season, so it’s still very early days and we have a lot of development work ahead of us. I enjoyed the qualifying session today: it was good fun out there and I felt comfortable in the car, and as a team we squeezed everything we could from the session. For tomorrow, I’m optimistic that our race pace will be stronger than our qualifying pace, as was often the case last year, so I’m looking forward to the race.”
Sergio Perez (Q2: 1:29.209 - P15): “It was quite a difficult qualifying session and the windy conditions seemed to have a big impact on our car. In terms of performance, I think we are where we predicted because we knew Q2 was achievable and we managed to get the maximum from the car. For tomorrow, we know this is a race where anything can happen: it’s unpredictable and sometimes you have to be patient. We need to see what the weather is like because the wind and track temperature will play a big part. Whatever happens, I will work hard to have a competitive race and target some points.”
Vijay Mallya, Team Principal and Managing Director: “Having two cars in Q2 is an encouraging sign after a challenging pre-season and it is testament to the hard work everyone in the team has put in during the winter months. To have Nico and Checo within a thousandth of a second of each other shows that they really pushed the car to its limit. The midfield appears to be very close, with a very small margin between six or seven cars so I expect a very interesting race tomorrow. Traditionally our race pace has been a strength so hopefully we can take the fight to the cars ahead of us.”
Sahara Force India