Force India baffled by lack of grip

Force India experienced a disappointing Abu Dhabi qualifying session after both drivers failed to make it past Q1.

Tonio Liuzzi was seventeenth with his team-mate, Adrian Sutil one place behind.

Both drivers complained of a lack of grip which had previously not been a factor in practice.

Adrian Sutil – 18th: A very short session with a lot of problems. The car didn’t seem to have any grip at all, particularly on the rear, and there was just so much oversteer that I was just struggling to keep the car on the circuit. I’m obviously very disappointed and we need to figure out what happened. The focus will now be on the race; there’s still a long way to go and of course I will try my best to get a good result.

Tonio Liuzzi – 17th: I was pretty happy on the first run of Q1 as the car felt really good and I was confident that we had the pace to get through to Q2. But then after we changed the tyres for the second run we had a strange problem in that the grip was not there any more. It felt weird to drive with so much less grip compared to the run before. Usually the tracks improve as we run more but this was very strange. We should have been in Q2 so we have to understand how this happened – whether it was the tyres or the tyre pressures, we need to work on this now. For sure with a lot of fuel we showed a really good performance yesterday but starting so far back will not make it easy, although in Brazil we did show that we can get very close to the points from this position. It will be difficult but I think 10th will be possible tomorrow, but points are always the aim.

Dominic Harlow, chief race engineer: After our first runs in Q1 both drivers reported that their cars were reasonably balanced, but lacking a bit of grip compared to the earlier practice session today. It was then a strange situation as we ran a further set of option tyres with both cars and just couldn’t find enough grip to improve the performance enough for Q2. The car has been strong all weekend in race trim, plus there are some elements in this event that will add to the unpredictability tomorrow so we’ll do our utmost to finish the season with a strong race.

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