Force India driver Adrian Sutil says that a suitable track and his previous race experience at Suzuka gives him confidence of doing well at the Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix.
The Suzuka track returns to F1 calendar after three years and Force India team believe that they can exploit the low downforce track as it suits their car.
“I’m really looking forward to this race. I lived in Japan for a year in 2006 when I was competing in Japanese F3 and I know the track very well as we often raced there,” Sutil said.
“It’s a brilliant drivers’ track, quite difficult to learn, but very rewarding when you get it right. I think our car will perform well there as well — as we’ve seen, we are very strong on the low and medium downforce tracks and Suzuka should suit us well,” the German added.
Tonio Liuzzi, who completed his first race for Force India at last week’s tough Singapore Gard Prix, also said that conditions suit their car at Suzuka.
“I think for Suzuka we will be in better shape. Singapore was a circuit where it’s difficult to get the feeling back, because the concentration is so high, and you have to try and stay away from the walls,” Liuzzi said.
“I think we are getting close to my optimum speed. Now I think we are ready for Suzuka. I’ve been there once in 2006 and it’s a circuit I like.
“I’m more optimistic for there, because the configuration for our car is somewhere in between Spa and Singapore, so we should be more competitive,” Liuzzi said.
Though Sutil has never raced an F1 car in Suzuka but his teammate Liuzzi did in 2006 with Toro Rosso. He had finished the race in the 14th position.
Singapore was Liuzzi’s first race finish for the team when he raced from 19th on the grid to 14th after a tough battle with former teammate Giancarlo Fisichella.
Chairman and team principal Vijay Mallya said he was expecting a competitive showing at Suzuka.
“Yes, definitely. Suzuka is more low downforce and should suit the car well. Plus both drivers know and enjoy the circuit so their confidence will be high. Tonio is now fully up to speed and has completed perhaps the most physical event of the year in Singapore.
“Adrian too has driven the circuit extensively so I would say we are feeling positive. I’d hope to see another Q2 and then let’s see about points in the race,” he said.