Force India's Paul di Resta made an aggressive strategy paid dividends yesterday in the Monaco Grand Prix.
The Brit qualified a lowly 15th and felt he'd probably be up against it in the race. However he got a clean start and was up to 11th after the opening lap, managing his tyres perfectly during the course of the race and eventually coming through to finish seventh and score points for the third time this season.
“A great result today and I'm very happy to make up so much ground on my starting position,” he reflected. “We went aggressive with the strategy and I have to say the team really optimised it.
“The secret was managing the tyres and trying to find clean air when we could. The car felt really good, much stronger than yesterday, and that allowed me to push when we needed to. Fortunately the rain held off at the end because that could have had a big impact on the end of the race.”
Team-mate Nico Hulkenberg meanwhile had a good afternoon as well and he also scored, finishing one spot lower in eighth place.
“It was a pretty messy start with lots of cars touching and I was lucky to make it through because I had to avoid [Romain] Grosjean, who was in the middle of the track. For the first few laps I was running with Michael [Schumacher] and we were stuck behind Kimi [Raikkonen] who was struggling on the supersofts, but it was difficult to get by,” he recounted.
“Unfortunately Kimi stopped on the same lap as me so I remained behind him and we came out in a lot of traffic, which is when Paul jumped ahead of me. The rest of the race was quite uneventful and I just focused on looking after the tyres. It's a great result for the team and we should be happy with the result.”
“A very enjoyable Monaco Grand Prix and I am delighted to see both Sahara Force Indias well inside the points,” summarised team principal, Dr Vijay Mallya. “Paul drove a very strong race, making up seven places on his grid position and managing the tyres perfectly. Nico was running the reverse strategy to Paul, which also worked out well, and means we leave here with ten important points.
“Now we look forward to the next race in Canada where we hope to continue our run of points finishes.”