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Force India 'would release di Resta'

Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley says the team wouldn't stand in the way of Paul di Resta if he wanted to move to a bigger team for the 2014 F1 season
Sahara Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley insists that the Silverstone-based outfit wouldn't stand in the way of Paul di Resta if a larger team approached him about a deal for the 2014 season.

The Briton has been linked with a number of larger teams in the past and is currently enjoying one of his best spells in the sport, having scored points in six of the seven races run to date to lie eighth in the championship standings.

That run of form has led to suggestions that di Resta is now firmly back in the shop window for F1's bigger teams and Fernley said the team wouldn't hold him back if the opportunity of a move came around – despite a deal being in place for 2014.

"Paul is contracted to us anyway for next season, so the question is whether somebody else comes in, so it won't be our decision," Fernley told the Press Association. "Whether Paul has to be released, or whatever, that can only come from him. But we wouldn't stand in his way. That's not our policy. If a driver feels he is better somewhere else, what would be the point in keeping him?

"We proved that at the end of last year with Nico Hulkenberg. Did we want to lose Nico? Not at all. He was a great member of our team, but we didn't get in the way of that particular move.

"We then proved by bringing in Adrian we are capable of recovering from such a situation and carrying on as normal. Maybe Nico is asking a few questions himself today, although last year it didn't look such a bad option."

Di Resta's form this season has proven to be a major factor in Force India currently holding fifth in the championship standings and Fernley said he was hopeful of a strong weekend again at Silverstone this weekend to maintain that form.

"I don't think we should be frightened of anything," he said. "We've been on every variation of track over the seven races so far and we've performed well at all of them. I think we can hold our top-ten qualifying position - assuming we can get that bit right - and it will all fall out in the race again.

"But we are genuinely the fifth quickest team out there at the moment. I don't think there is any doubt about that."



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