Mallya not taking sixth for granted

2011 Brazilian Grand Prix

Paul di Resta, Force India, Buddh International Circuit, 2011

Paul di Resta, Force India, Buddh International Circuit, 2011

Force India team principal Vijay Mallya is wary of an eleventh-hour setback in the team’s pursuit of sixth in the championship.

The team is 15 points ahead of Sauber and 16 ahead of Toro Rosso heading into the final race of the season.

Sixth in the championship would be the best result for the team since it became Force India but Mallya says he isn’t celebrating yet: “Absolutely not!

“I still remember what happened last year when we missed out on sixth place by just one point. We certainly head to Brazil in a very strong position, but I’ve learned that you should never take anything for granted.”

Mallya is hopeful of a repeat of the team’s Abu Dhabi form, where both drivers qualified and finished inside the top ten: “We needed to get two cars in the points and beat our direct competitors to get some breathing space in the championship, and that?s exactly what we did.

“There were some performance upgrades for the car, which worked well, and the drivers did the rest. In the race we split the strategies to cover all the options and we came away with our third double points finish of the season.”

Mallya described 2011 as the team’s “most complete season yet”:

“We?ve developed a car that has been strong in all areas and we?ve given some of the bigger teams a run for their money. I?m proud of what we have achieved, which is a testament to the dedication and commitment of all the team members.

“If we can secure sixth in the championship this weekend, it will be a key milestone in the history of this team because the competitiveness of the Formula 1 grid is as intense as I can remember.”

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13 comments on Mallya not taking sixth for granted

  1. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 22nd November 2011, 9:55

    Somehow, I don’t think Mallya is going to be in Formula 1 next year. His team will, but I think his financial goose is cooked.

  2. Outsider said on 22nd November 2011, 9:58

    Vijay is shrewd businessman, how he built his liquour empire is evidence enough. I’m sure he didn’t become one of the richest men in Asia without a solid business mind. I’m sure he will sort out his airline..I mean which airline isn’t in th **** now?

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 22nd November 2011, 10:20

      Acually, Mallya built his empire by constantly borrowing from banks, and then hiding his loans from other lenders. A lot of industry analysts believe his routes are unsustainable, and that it was only a matter of time before the compant needed to be bailed out. Right now, Kingfisher is in such a precarious position that if it collapses, it is in danger of dragging the entire Indian air industry with it. Mallya is not shrewd – certainly not nearly as shrewd as he would like everyone to believe. His companies are haemmorhaging money, and his solution is to compound the problem by taking out an even bigger loan just to stabilise the company.

  3. snowman (@snowman) said on 22nd November 2011, 10:57

    I am sure they would not have missed out on sixth place last year if they weren’t taking the insane option of handicapping one of their drivers most weekends by having the test driver use up valuable time in the first session.

    They are also doing the same this year. It would be wiser to do like the top teams and give their two drivers the best possible chance, which ever two they are.

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 22nd November 2011, 11:02

      @snowman

      the insane option of handicapping one of their drivers most weekends by having the test driver use up valuable time in the first session.

      An easy way to tell would be to show a correlation between which driver didn’t have the car in FP1 and where they finished. I’d be surprised if there is any significant connection, however, as they’ve continued with the policy this year.

      Moreover, I haven’t noticed any connection this year when Hulkenberg’s had the chance to drive.

      • snowman (@snowman) said on 22nd November 2011, 11:37

        “An easy way to tell would be to show a correlation between which driver didn’t have the car in FP1 and where they finished” See what your saying but it’s far from exact and is more logical to just ask; does this benefit or handicap our drivers over the weekend?, when one place higher finish can make all the difference at end of year.

        My thinking is it can’t possibly help the driver who has missed the session and if anything will hinder. How much is probably little but Mallya did say they lost 6th by a point and that is millions in money.

        Could see the benefits if they had two rookies and they had an experienced tester. Say last year with Senna and Chadock in the HRT if they had someone like De Le Rosa test for a session.

        Would like to hear a driver say it doesn’t make any difference to them loosing a session over the weekend.

  4. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 22nd November 2011, 13:59

    Sixth is a pretty big deal if you’re not a constructor (excl. RBR, of course) so you can’t fault his hunger. It would be a fantastic result for them, considering this year was the inaugural Indian GP.

  5. Funkyf1 (@funkyf1) said on 22nd November 2011, 20:21

    Something tells me Sutil might fall ill this weekend and THE HULK will step in and take pole again :P

  6. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 23rd November 2011, 3:03

    Mallya is struggling badly with his Airlines company,I do wonder if that continues then may be in the near future he may quit F1.

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