Force India F1 team's Adrian Sutil was 'very disappointed' after qualifying for the European Grand Prix at Valencia in Spain today and blamed a lack of grip for his failure to progress into the top-ten shoot-out.
Sutil, who had been fourth this morning in final practice, switched to the option tyres for Q2 and that proved to be his undoing. Indeed in the end he missed the Q3 cut by almost three tenths, his best lap a 1 minute 38.851 seconds. He will thus line-up 13th, his worst start position of the F1 2010 season.
"This morning the car felt really good and I could push on both the prime and the option tyres, and it showed in the time I was able to do," Sutil said. "But in Q2 I had a clean lap but the grip just didn't seem to be there.
"Over the whole session it was so hard and we couldn't get the tyres to work - such a big difference from the morning session. It's obviously very disappointing as we looked very strong here and we didn't change much from this morning.
"I'm now concentrating on the race - we had a good event here last year and, as we saw in Montreal two weeks ago, our race pace is very strong so there's always opportunities to make up positions."
Vitantonio Liuzzi meanwhile also had similar problems in the sister VJM03 and he will start one place lower in 14th.
"This morning we were really quick and it didn't start too badly in Q1 for us so we were very positive about getting a good result," Liuzzi continued. "But it got very hot this afternoon, perhaps seven or eight degrees hotter than in free practice this morning, and it seemed to have a big effect on the tyres.
"Both Adrian and myself had big issues with the soft tyres in Q2 and had a lot of understeer. It's a real shame as both yesterday and this morning we were looking very competitive and we had hoped for more.
"But we're not giving up as there are so many possibilities in the race - just look at Montreal where we had the accident at the start, but fought to the end and still picked up two points."
Force India F1 team boss Dr Vijay Mallya added: "It's been a disappointing day as we showed a genuine pace this morning and couldn't quite deliver that this afternoon. It's something to work on tonight and come back strong in the race tomorrow. We've shown good pace here before and in fact last year we started 12th and 16th and finished 10th and 12th in the race so there's still everything to work towards."