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Force India aiming for regular points

Paul di Resta, Force India, Jerez test, 2010Force India boss Vijay Mallya is confident his team can score points regularly this season, following a strong end to 2009.

"We finished 2009 on a real high note - our first-ever points, a podium and one place up in the Constructors' Championship," said Mallya in a team preview ahead of this weekend's first race of the season in Bahrain.

"That is enough in itself to set the bar much higher this season, but we're really determined to take it to the next level.

"Regular points and the odd podium have got to be the aim and we know it is possible. I have a lot of faith in the drivers and the technical staff, I think we've got into a very good rhythm together now."

The Indian admits he is confident the new car can help the team keep its momentum going, after a promising showing during winter testing.

"I have been very encouraged by the entire performance, both at the track and at the factory," he added. "The testing times gave very positive headlines, but it is very difficult to know where we are until we get to Bahrain.

"Certainly however the initial reports from the drivers are encouraging and when that happens it's worth another three to four tenths - if they feel happy and confident in the car then that they can really attack."

Race driver Tonio Liuzzi reckons Force India should be able to score its first point already this weekend.

"For the first race we want to show that our winter work has paid off. Points are our target for the time being and getting into the top ten, as high as possible," Liuzzi said.

"Being realistic, a few points should be feasible and hopefully everything goes as well as in testing with good reliability for the first race."

The team said reserve driver Paul di Resta, who is expected to replace the racing drivers in some Friday practice sessions this year, will not be running this weekend.

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