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Fisi, Sutil to remain at Force India?


Force India F1 team owner Dr Vijay Mallya has hinted that his squad will feature an unchanged line-up next season, as it attempts to finally overcome the handicap its began life with and become at least a midfield challenger.

Speaking in an interview with the official Formula One website, Mallya said that both Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil have attributes that make them valuable to the Silverstone-based team, despite test and reserve pilot Tonio Liuzzi having turned in solid performances on his mid-week outings in the VJM01.

"I have two good drivers and you must understand that, for Force India, my needs are somewhat unique," Mallya insisted, "The experience of Giancarlo is invaluable to me and Adrian has lots of talent. I think he is improving race by race, becoming more consistent, so I am quite happy with them.

"More importantly, they have a great attitude that will help me to face the challenges of tomorrow and I think they will be very satisfied driving the 2009 car, which I personally am sure will be a significant improvement - and a big surprise."

With Fisichella retiring in five races so far this season, and Sutil failing to see the chequered flag in seven of his eleven outings, Force India has yet the trouble the scorers - the only team to do so - but Mallya remains phlegmatic as he heads towards the final phase of his first year as an F1 team owner.

"I will use the time [between Budapest and Valencia] to really reflect on what we have achieved in the first half of the season," he noted, "It is very clear that, in the early part of the season, we made good progress compared to other teams and then we slowed down a little, because maybe other teams made more progress than us.

"To be very honest and frank, we invested a lot of time, resource and money to improve the team during the 2008 season, even though time has been very short. One realises how tough and competitive Formula One really is - this is the pinnacle of technology and performance and it reinforces the challenge that I have before me for 2009 - to be really competitive. I am quite optimistic, however, that my experience so far has pointed us very correctly into the right direction.

"I know now precisely what I am up against, I know precisely the challenge before me, so I can plan better. I feel happy that maybe I learned the hard way, but it is good to learn! So 2009 will see a much more competitive Force India team."

Mallya admits that, despite hoping to make the team an instant midfield contender, he had to overcome unforeseen hurdles put in place by previous owners of an operation that went through four identities in as many years.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Force India Front Wing, Hungarian F1, Hungaroring, 1st-3rd, August, 2008
27.11.2016 - Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 leads Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race,  Sahara Force India mechanics
27.11.2016 - Race,  Sahara Force India mechanics
27.11.2016 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 and Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 and Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
27.11.2016 - Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31, Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR11 and Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
27.11.2016 - Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 and Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
27.11.2016 - Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 and Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
27.11.2016 - Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09 fans
27.11.2016 - Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
26.11.2016 - Qualifying, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09

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Robsy - Unregistered

August 11, 2008 5:39 PM

Calm yourself Rich - your Scuderia Red blood has too low a boiling point. You'll note the 'poss' part of my post - although both drivers have denied retirement is being considered, you know as well as I do that there is much discussion about retirement for both. Anyway, my point remains - forced driver changes are going to be at a lower level this year than for a while - certainly since last years game of musical chairs.



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