- Korean Grand Prix
Di Resta to miss another Friday practice
Force India reserve driver Paul di Resta will sit out of his third Friday practice session in a row at this weekend's Korean Grand Prix to allow race drivers Adrian Sutil and Tonio Liuzzi to learn the new circuit.
Di Resta has taken part in eight Friday morning practice sessions this season, but since the Italian Grand Prix has been forced to watch from the garage.
"As we decided at the start of the season, I'm not going to be driving in Korea as it's a new track for everyone and the drivers will need the extra track time to get used to its nuances," di Resta explained. "With the track being ready so late, that extra time is even more important as the conditions are going to evolve very, very quickly over the race weekend."
Adrian Sutil said his main focus in practice will be to improve the car's pace in qualifying after tyre warm-up issues have seen Force India qualify behind championship rivals Williams at recent races.
"I've seen and driven the layout on the sim, but what you can't get an idea of is the bumps, the grip levels and the kerbs," he said. "As the track surface has been laid only very recently it's going to evolve over the weekend - I expect this to be one of the major talking points of the weekend and we'll look to get as much information on Friday. I expect we'd run a medium level of downforce on the circuit but a lot will depend on the bumps and the track surface. If there is a lot of grip then we could even run a lower level but we'll see when we get there. It just means practice will be busier than usual as this is the kind of information you can only get when you drive the cars on the track.
"It's going to be an interesting weekend as we've got a big battle on our hands at the moment. We've got to do better in qualifying this race and then of course finish - it was a disappointment not to get to the end as the car has been very reliable this year, but it just makes me more determined to get points this time out, both for myself and for the team."
Tonio Liuzzi will use a new chassis this weekend after his Force India was wrecked at the Japanese Grand Prix when Felipe Massa crashed into him. He said it would be a busy Friday practice session as the team was also bringing updates to the car.
"It will make Friday practice pretty busy as we look through all the data and try to get the most out of the car and the tyres," he said. "We've got a couple of new tweaks on the car as well that will make the programme even more charged. Plus I will have another chassis to use in Korea and for the last three races as my car was very badly damaged in Japan.
"My goal this time out is of course to go the whole distance in the race and also to make the most of qualifying as we have really been struggling in this area. We have found it hard to get temperature into the tyres over one flying lap and that means we've started further back, but we will try and understand it and see if we can improve. I'm looking forward to getting out there and doing a good job throughout the weekend; it's going to be an interesting one for sure."