• Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - Qualifying

Sutil reckons he could have qualified higher

ESPNF1 Staff
November 12, 2011 « Massa had 'hoped for more' | Austin plays down Ecclestone's doubts »
Adrian Sutil: "The lap was a little bit compromised because I didn't get the tyres fully up to temperature" © Getty Images
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Adrian Sutil reckons he could have troubled Michael Schumacher with a clean lap in Q3, but is happy with his ninth place grid position nonetheless.

Sutil's Force India has looked quick all weekend and he was just over a tenth off Schumacher on his final attempt of the session. He revealed that he considered not setting a time in Q3 in order to save tyres and the deliberation over whether to run compromised his final lap.

"I'm happy with ninth place today and it was a good session for me. In Q3 we waited a bit longer than planned because we wanted to wait and see what Mercedes did. In the end they decided to go out so I also went out and I did a timed lap. The lap was a little bit compromised because I didn't get the tyres fully up to temperature, so maybe I could have been a bit higher up. Still, I don't think we can complain too much because P9 is a fair reflection of our pace at the moment."

Force India team principal Vijay Mallya is hoping for points from both his drivers on Sunday in order to sure up the team's sixth position in the constructors' championship.

"I'm very pleased with our performance today and with both Sahara Force India cars starting from the fifth row of the grid we are in good shape for tomorrow," he said. "It will be an interesting race because we have seen that the tyre degradation here is not that severe, which means we need to think long and hard about how we will use the strategy. With just two races to go we are not underestimating how important it is to score points here to strengthen our grasp on sixth place in the constructors' championship. I believe we have the speed to do so, but as I've said before you never know until it's in the bag."