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Liuzzi confident of beating Sutil in second half of season

ESPNF1 Staff
July 13, 2010 « Williams enjoys independence but eyes carmaker tie-up | »
Tonio Liuzzi is aiming to inch ahead of Adrian Sutil © Sutton Images

Tonio Liuzzi is confident he can beat Force India team-mate Adrian Sutil in the second half of the season.

After a number of unlucky results at the start of the season, Liuzzi is 23 points off Sutil at the midway point of the championship. Liuzzi struggled with a defective chassis at three grands prix and also fell foul of traffic in qualifying at some of the opening races. At recent grands prix his car has been down on top speed compared to Sutil's, but once he has cured that problem he is confident he can be much more competitive.

"Adrian had a really good start to the season, but I need my luck to turn around a little bit because I should have at least double the points I have," he told ESPNF1. "It's not a problem of pace or speed, it's more down to having a bit of luck and getting the results we deserve.

"But I think we can be really strong in the second half of the season, especially at tracks like Monza and Spa, and I think I'm in good shape to be ahead of Adrian because we've shown that when the car is working things are different. But first we need to find out what the problem is with my car compared to his. Once we sort that out it won't be a question of pace or speed because we know we are there."

Liuzzi is hoping to start his fight back at the German Grand Prix and is confident the circuit will suit his car more than Silverstone, where he finished outside the points in 11th.

"We've got some updates coming to the car," he added. "Hockenheim will be an important race for us and I think, because it is not as related to downforce as Silverstone, we can be in good shape. At Silverstone we knew from the beginning that it would be a tough cookie for us and not the best track for our car. But already we have a good pace overall and I believe at Hockenheim we can improve our position and be more competitive than we were at Silverstone."

However, he revealed that the team was already well into its development of the 2011 car, with many of the updates for the coming races aimed at both this year and next year.

"We have been working on it [the 2011 car] for quite a while, but trying to get the best from this year's car and bring it to next year's car. Next year will be very important in the development scale of the team.

"Quite a bit [will be transferable from the VJM03], especially because the wind tunnel is following a lot of the development for the second half of the season, with pieces that are quite different from what we have already. I think we are already thinking of the future, trying to understand things for next year's car. I think there are a few things that look really interesting and will move us on in 2011."

Click here to read Tonio Liuzzi's exclusive column