Paul di Resta determined to pounce on 2014 F1 driver shake-up
|By Matt Beer||Sunday, January 13th 2013, 10:58 GMT|
Paul di Resta expects another big shake-up in the Formula 1 driver market for 2014 and is determined to capitalise on it.
The Scot was linked with a number of top-team drives during the 2012 'silly season', including the McLaren seat that ultimately went to Sergio Perez.
Di Resta, who will instead stay at Force India, said he was not bitter about missing out on the McLaren slot despite his previous links with the team and engine supplier Mercedes.
"I've got a great relationship with McLaren. Martin Whitmarsh was actually the key person who put my name forward for Force India, and also I've been part of Mercedes-Benz for a lot of years," said di Resta on the AUTOSPORT Stage with KX at AUTOSPORT International.
"But I'm manly enough to stand up and say that for whatever reason the board took decisions not to put me in the car.
"Our paths may cross. It may be in a car that's beating them and I'll have the last laugh. But if I've got to work with them, they're professional people and they win races, and that's what I'm in the sport to do.
"Unfortunately in this sport now there's a little bit more to it. There's a commercial side and money's tight. Perez has some good backing."
Di Resta believes the Mexican will have to prove he can match up to Jenson Button this year to keep his McLaren seat for the long term, and that Perez will not be the only driver or team under such pressure.
"He's up against a big task. He's got to perform," he said.
"Jenson's obviously not going to give him an easy time. Jenson is probably at his peak.
"Many of these moves that have happened that have changed the flow of Formula 1 might not work out.
"Lewis [Hamilton] might not like the way Mercedes work. It can all change very quickly.
"The biggest thing is to get the results and keep yourself in the team bosses' minds. Having a good relationship with them is key and I have that up and down the paddock. I've not upset anybody.
"Without begging for a job, you've just got to be in their face at the right time."
2013 Formula 1 line-up so far: Red Bull Sebastian Vettel Mark Webber Ferrari Fernando Alonso Felipe Massa McLaren Jenson Button Sergio Perez Lotus Kimi Raikkonen Romain Grosjean Mercedes Lewis Hamilton Nico Rosberg Sauber Nico Hulkenberg Esteban Gutierrez Force India Paul di Resta seat still available Williams Pastor Maldonado Valtteri Bottas Toro Rosso Daniel Ricciardo Jean-Eric Vergne Caterham Charles Pic seat still available Marussia Timo Glock Max Chilton