• Japanese Grand Prix

Di Resta to show Suzuka 'respect'

ESPNF1 Staff
October 3, 2011 « Drivers face taxing time in India | Suzuka 'a real drivers circuit' »
Paul di Resta is full of confidence following his sixth place in Singapore © Getty Images

Paul di Resta says he will have to "respect" Suzuka as he prepares to drive the circuit for the first time in the Japanese Grand Prix.

Di Resta's debut season in Formula One has been impressive, with 20 points to his name so far. As Force India's reserve driver last season he drove on a number of circuits during Friday practice but Suzuka was not one of them. Di Resta says that he is looking forward to learning the track, but having walked around it last year he's fully aware of the challenge.

"It's one of those venues that stand out because all the drivers love it and say great things about it," di Resta said. "I went there last year - my first visit to Japan - and saw it for myself. Just walking the track makes you respect the place because it's narrow, fast and has some really unusual corners. It also a technical lap: you can take different lines through some of the corners so there's a lot for me to learn during Friday practice."

Having scored 18 points in his last four races, di Resta says he's in a good frame of mind heading to Japan.

"I'm feeling very positive. Things have really come together quite well in the middle part of the year and I think we've delivered as a team. In Singapore the upgrade package worked as we expected and contributed to the end result. That's a big credit to the team and we've all worked very hard to achieve these recent results."

Di Resta also agreed with his team principal Vijay Mallya that the target now was to chase down Renault for fifth place in the constructor's championship.

"It's definitely achievable, but I think it will be a big ask unless we get quite a bit of luck along the way. The key will be getting both cars in the points, but we've also seen that Renault look stronger on certain tracks. So we're aiming at catching them but well aware they still have quite a points advantage."