If you said to Force India they would score points in the first two races of the 2011 season, I’m sure they will have snatched your hand off.
The Silverstone-based team were expected to be off the pace and struggling to keep up with the likes of Toro Rosso and Sauber. But it has not panned out like that and Force India have made a decent start this year.
Paul di Resta could not have asked for a better start to his first season in Formula One after finishing in the points in Australia and Malaysia. Will he make it three out of three?
Adrian Sutil will want to bounce back in Shanghai after a disappointing Malaysian Grand Prix for the German. We have only had two Grand Prix weekends but Sutil will be concerned by the fact that di Resta has outqualified him on both occasions.
It is 2-0 to di Resta in qualifying and 1-1 in race results after Sutil finished ahead of his team-mate in Australia. It promises to be an intriguing battle at Force India between both drivers and it will be interesting to see if Paul can continue to beat Adrian in qualifying and in the races.
With Force India scoring points and upgrades yet to come, we have still not seen the full potential of the VJM04 and I reckon we have yet to see the best of this years Force India.
The fact the team have scored points in Australia and Malaysia will give them confidence they can add to their points tally in China.
It has been a promising start for 24 year-old di Resta and his latest points came at Sepang. The Scotsman was running ninth in the closing stages of the race in Malaysia and had the seven-time World Champion Michael Schumacher to contend with.
Paul was unable to keep Schumacher behind him but to finish in the top ten for the second consecutive race is a great achievement. Last years DTM Champion will be looking to build on his two points finishes this weekend at the Chinese Grand Prix.
As for Adrian, he will be aiming to finish in the points in Shanghai after coming home in 11th place at Malaysia. He will also want to improve his qualifying.
Sutil only managed 16th in Australia and 17th last weekend in Malaysia. He has also been outqualified by di Resta twice already so this is something Adrian will want to put right.
There is still a long way to go this year and I’m confident both Adrian and Paul will have solid seasons with Force India.
Before I go on to talk about the launch of the Force India Academy, I have read about Nico Hulkenburg wanting a race seat with Force India next season.
I still feel Williams made a huge mistake in letting Hulkenburg go and Pastor Maldonado has not exactly pulled up any trees so far.
If Schumacher did leave Mercedes at the end of the 2011 season, then I’m sure Sutil would be linked with a move to the German team. Whether the former Spyker driver would join Mercedes is another question.
Hulkenburg is without doubt a talented driver and was harshly treated by Williams in my opinion. Who knows he could be driving for Vijay Mallya’s team next year.
Force India have announced the launch of their new Academy programme. This is absolutely fantastic news not only for the team but for billions of Indians who want to make it into Formula One.
Could Force India find an Indian driver who can make it onto the big stage of Formula One? Only time will tell. I know if I was ten years younger I would take this opportunity.
Finally I wish Force India the best of luck at the Chinese Grand Prix and hopefully the team will continue to score points.