Force India's Vitantonio Liuzzi endured another frustrating qualifying session today ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix and for the third time this season failed to make it through to the top-ten shoot-out.
Liuzzi was gutted to drop out in Q1 and his misery was only heightened by the performance of his team-mate, Adrian Sutil, who once again seemingly made it through both Q1 and Q2 with relative ease.
Liuzzi will now start from a lowly 18th and while he tried to remain upbeat, he knows he will have his work cut-out to make his way up the pack and into the points.
"We were fast in the morning and the car was reacting well to changes and seemed to have a good pace. Again, though, for the third time in four races I got caught in traffic, again with a Williams and an HRT," the Italian moaned. "But that's how it is, it happens, we have to look at why and then work on this.
"Tomorrow I think we are in great shape for the race as the speed has been there when we were on the longer runs but when you start in 18th place it makes life much more difficult. We are still optimistic though and we keep pushing whatever happens."
Sutil in contrast had no such problems, and he will line-up tenth on the grid, just behind record-breaking multiple F1 world champion, Michael Schumacher and Renault number one driver, Robert Kubica.
"Another Q3 qualifying performance for us, I think we can be very pleased with that. Again, it's P10 - I know this position very well from the last races in Australia and Bahrain! The car is behaving very well and we can be happy about the balance we have," Sutil noted.
"It's a bit difficult in the mid sector though as the grip is missing a little bit so we have a touch of oversteer and it's hard to drive on the limit. However from the team's point of view we can look forward to the race tomorrow: I think our long runs were quite good on Friday."
Dominic Harlow, Force India's chief race engineer, meanwhile had mixed feelings and while he was happy for Sutil, he felt sorry for Liuzzi.
"We're very pleased to have another top ten qualifying with Adrian here, with some very good laps. It was still tricky with quite low grip and ultimately we felt that another position or two could have been within reach in Q3.
"Tonio was very unfortunate with traffic today in Qualifying, so couldn't actually put together a representative lap. It does seem to be a lottery sometimes early in the session given the pace difference between some of the cars. With the possibility of another change in the weather conditions tomorrow, we're confident of a very exciting race though and we'll be looking to add to our points total," he concluded.