Sahara Force India Russian GP Free Practice Report

Sahara Force India made the most of today’s free practice sessions to get acquainted with the new Sochi Autodrome ahead of Sunday’s inaugural Russian Grand Prix.Nico Hülkenberg VJM07-04FP1: 1:43.976 (P13) 21 lapsFP2: 1:41.677 (P12) 27 lapsNico: “It was a positive Friday for us. This is a nice track to drive; it's really cool but also challenging and tricky. There are some very technical parts, especially the last sector. We ticked all the boxes in our programme today and got some good data. We will work on tweaking the balance a little overnight in order to find a bit more pace and improve performance for tomorrow.”

Sergio Perez VJM07-02FP1: 1:43.164 (P6) 26 lapsFP2: 1:42.090 (P14) 29 lapsSergio: “It was nice to get out on track and get our mind off the very difficult week we all had. I would say today was a good start to our weekend. We managed to complete almost all our programme, with the only interruption caused by the red flag. This interrupted our assessment of the prime tyre in the long runs, but it feels like it handles quite well. The track has a very nice layout and the option tyres in particular work really well here. As a circuit, it appears to be quite demanding in terms of fuel, which will have implications for the strategy. These factors should make for quite an interesting race for the fans.”Vijay Mallya, Team Principal and Managing Director“One of the priorities today was to give the drivers as much track time as possible to get acquainted with this new circuit. We were able to verify the correlation between our simulations and the actual track running, checking that we are running the correct settings and that we are getting the most of the advantages our power unit gives us. There is still plenty of work to do but it's positive to see that both Nico and Checo were getting happier and happier about the car as the day progressed. We end the day being pretty satisfied with the balance we have shown in the long runs, and we will aim to get a bit more qualifying performance ahead of tomorrow.”