Force India F1 team principal Vijay Mallya has admitted that he is disappointed to see the squad's strong start to the 2010 Formula One season end in the rain of China at the weekend.

With Adrian Sutil and Tonio Liuzzi having notched up 18 points betwenn them in the opening three races, and the German again having made it through to the top ten shoot-out in qualifying in Shanghai, hopes were high for another haul, but it wasn't to be as unpredictable weather found more than a few teams wanting when it came to making the right tyre call.

"It is disappointing to see our run of points end and not to have been able to make more of these conditions, but that's sometimes what happens - it can become a bit of a lottery," Mallya acknowledged, "There are still some positives from the weekend - Adrian again proved his wet weather prowess and also that we are genuine top ten - but we've got some work to do now that Renault has opened up a sizeable advantage. However, we have some developments in the pipeline and the season has a long way to run. We'll regroup and come back strongly in Spain, I'm sure."

Sutil battled strongly all afternoon, but ultimately came up short of adding to his tally by just seven-tenths of a second, crossing the line in eleventh place behind a troubled Michael Schumacher.

"It was a real strategy race this time," the younger German pointed out, "At times, it was difficult to know which was the best tyre to be on, as it would rain and then dry and then rain again.

"We started on the dry tyre and then pitted for inters under the safety car on lap one. At this point, it was the right decision, as it was raining quite a bit, and it was easy for me to overtake a lot of cars. Then it eased and we switched to the dries for a few laps, but then there was more rain.

"On the second set of inters [that] we put on on lap 19, I was able to fight with the top guys, including Lewis [Hamilton], Sebastian [Vettel] and Felipe [Massa] for quite a few laps, but then the tyres grained up and I had to pit again. I lost a couple of positions in this final stop and that was what dropped me back to 13th.

"Although we could close to within a second of Michael, I just ran out of laps to get past. But that's how it is - sometimes you win in this type of race and, sometimes, it just doesn't go your way."

Team-mate Liuzzi, meanwhile, didn't even get the chance to see the chequered flag, having spun on the opening lap and collected both Kamui Kobayashi and Sebastien Buemi.

"Unfortunately, I had a problem warming up the brakes on the formation lap due to the cold and the rain and, then, when I went into corner four on the first lap and braked, the rear completely locked and I lost control of the car and went off," the Italian reported, "It was a shame as we had had a really good start and gained three positions in just the first corner and it could have been a very interesting race, particularly with how the conditions panned out. But that's how it is, it didn't go our way this time."


Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register to add your comment