Force India: fight against Williams or Sauber?

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E Force India is actually eighth in the World Cup table. The Williams FW34 is the better car. Force India has the better drivers. Two that drive each other. And which are already in the notebooks of the competition. Paul di Resta and Nico Hülkenberg have their place with Force India.

But both keep one eye on the driver market in case there is a vacancy further up. The team management had already indicated that if a top team is interested they would be willing to let one of the two drivers go in return for a severance payment.

Di Resta is slightly ahead

On points the score is 32:31 for Paul di Resta. In the training duel, the Scot leads 8: 5 based on starting positions. But actually 7: 6, because Nico Hülkenberg only fell behind his team-mates at Silverstone because he had to drop five starting positions due to a gearbox change.

And in Monza, too, it would have been a tight squeeze between the Force India pilots if the German's car hadn't had the petrol pump on strike at the beginning of the first fast lap in Q1. For Hülkenberg this meant: Last starting position instead of top ten.

The climb into Q3 would have been just a compulsory exercise for Hülkenberg. Force India were among the three fastest cars on one lap at Monza. Without the gear change, Paul di Resta would have started from the second row. The 2011 DTM champion had already finished third in the last free practice session on Saturday morning. A hint that the fourth fastest time in the qualification was not a coincidence.

Nico Hülkenberg was four tenths missing in the third training session on the team-mate. But he was confident that he would close the gap in qualifying. 'I drove the entire free practice session with less downforce than Paul and had it adjusted for the qualifying session.' That cost three km /h on the straight, but brought more downforce. The technology thwarted Hülkenberg's plans.

The clean tactic in the Force India doesn't work

The Force India was still fast in the race at 341 km /h on road. Only the two Lotus surpassed the top speed of the white-green cars. For Hülkenberg there was only the Perez tactic in the race. Drive off with hard tires and hold out as long as possible.

But the Force India is not clean. He handles his tires a lot harder.Hülkenberg stayed on the track until lap 27. At the beginning of the pit stops for the one-stopers, the Rhinelander was in 12th place, so he still had a chance of scoring World Championship points. But he noticed right away: 'The rear tires had deteriorated too much. And when I was through the first group, I was most of the time on my own and without DRS.' Eighth finish. 'Judging by our practice times, it was a disappointment. I lost too much time on the medium tires.' Di Resta also suffered from heavy wear on the rear tires. In retrospect, the engineers created the problem themselves. Like their colleagues at Lotus, they have set too little downforce. Good for one lap, bad over the distance.

Nico Hülkenberg not only paid with heavy tire degradation. In the second half of the race, the brakes let up more and more. Not a nice feeling in Monza. 'When it got worse and worse, I got scared and parked the car.'

Mallya dreams of a duel against Sauber

In the duel between Force India and Williams, the racing team is leading Silverstone with 63:54. Singapore is a good place for Force India. Paul di Resta finished sixth last year and his stable rival Adrian Sutil eighth. In 2010, Nico Hülkenberg finished ninth in his only appearance on the street circuit, at that time still in a Williams.

However, the competition is tougher than in Monza. Mercedes brings its large aerodynamic package. Williams is rated higher again on this type of track because of the car's good traction. Force India, on the other hand, has frozen development until it is clear why the wind tunnel results cannot be transferred one hundred percent to the racetrack.

Nevertheless, team boss Vijay Mallya dreams of a big catch-up in the last third of the season. 'Singapore should suit us well because the route has always suited our car well.' Mallya doesn't just look at Williams in the World Cup. With one eye the Indian even looked at Sauber, who were 37 points away. 'If we can get a few more podium places, we can catch them.'


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