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Force India in the mix for podiums in 2014 - Fernley

Speaking exclusively to Crash.net, Force India's Bob Fernley believes pre-season testing has shown the team to be a podium contender come Melbourne
Force India expects to be fighting for podiums at the start of the season, according to deputy team principal Bob Fernley.

Sergio Perez was quickest on each of the opening two days of the final test in Bahrain as Force India showed some strong pace. Speaking exclusively to Crash.net in the Bahrain paddock after the end of the test, Fernley said the team's ambitions had been further cemented by how its pre-season has gone.

“Our aspirations this year has always been about the podium,” Fernley said. “It's no secret that obviously that's our goal because it's the next step of our evolution of a team. So we've got to move in to that top five group – number one – and number two when you're in that top five group you've got to be looking for podiums.”

Asked if he felt Force India was on target for podiums, Fernley replied: “Yes I think so. Looking at it now I'd be optimistic, but there's still got to be some very good teams that have got to come through yet, Red Bull being one of them…”

And Fernley admitted that he expects the grid in Melbourne will likely be dominated by Mercedes-powered cars.

“I have to say I didn't think that at the start of testing but it's become reasonably evident as the testing has gone on. But Ferrari are in there quite strongly as well. At the moment I think it will be five teams – if everything goes to plan – fighting for the Q3 programme in Melbourne, and then depending on what happens with Red Bull and Lotus.”


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM07. 28.02.2014. Formula One Testing, Bahrain Test Two, Day Two, Sakhir, Bahrain.
(L to R): Carlos Slim Domit (MEX) Businessman; Miguel Angel Mancera (MEX) Mayor of Mexico City; Francisco Maass Pena (MEX) Deputy Minister for Tourism; Alejandro Soberon (MEX) Corporacion Interamericana CEO.
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Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 signs autographs for the fans.
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Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 signs autographs for the fans.
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(L to R): Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 with team mate Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1.
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Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1.
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(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 with team mate Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1.
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(L to R): Carlos Slim Domit (MEX) Chairman of America Movil with Francisco Maass Pena (MEX) Deputy Minister for Tourism; Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1; Miguel Angel Mancera (MEX) Mayor of Mexico City; Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1; Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner; Alejandro Soberon (MEX) Corporacion Interamericana CEO.
21.01.2015.  Force India F1 Team Livery Reveal, Soumaya Museum, Mexico City, Mexico.
(L to R): Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 with Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner and Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1.
21.01.2015.
(L to R): Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 with team mate Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 and Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner.
21.01.2015.
(L to R): Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 and Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 reveal the 2015 Sahara Force India F1 Team livery.
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Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner.
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(L to R): Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Sahara Force India F1 Team Owner with Carlos Slim Domit (MEX) Chairman of America Movil.
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Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1.,
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Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 with fans.
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Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 signs autographs for the fans.
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The Sahara Force India F1 Team 2015 livery is revealed in the Soumaya Museum.
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The Sahara Force India F1 Team 2015 livery unveil in the Soumaya Museum.
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Taipan

March 03, 2014 2:56 PM

EdOz, I tend to agree, Merc, RBR, Ferrari and to an extent McLaren can throw money and resources towards the development of the car all season, that may be where Williams struggle. But just getting back towards the front would be a great achievement for the team and give them something to build on for the future. It would be great to see Frank with a genuinely competitive team again.

sprulz

March 03, 2014 3:29 PM

It would be great to see some underdogs on the podium. Didn't happen at ALL last year, which is why 2013 was boring. However at the moment, it looks like the only midfield teams that have a shot are Force India and Williams. Still it will be fun watching them compete, it looks to me like a new, intense rivalry.



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