Force India believes mistakes cost it sixth in F1 2018 to McLaren

Racing Point Force India Formula 1 boss Otmar Szafnauer says mistakes in the last few races cost his team a shot at recovering to sixth place in the world championship

Force India believes mistakes cost it sixth in F1 2018 to McLaren

The Silverstone-based team lost the points it scored before its ownership change during the summer, and it eventually finished 10 points shy of McLaren, and just four ahead of Sauber.

In the Abu Dhabi F1 season finale Sergio Perez finished eighth, while an oil leak - believed to be from a pipe unrelated to Mercedes - led to a retirement for Esteban Ocon.

However Szafnauer highlighted other dropped points as crucial in the final result of the season, including when Perez and Ocon collided at the start of the Singapore GP.

"Sixth was possible, but we just made some mistakes in the last few races," Szafnauer told Autosport.

"Singapore was a big one, and we had a brake failure in Mexico. So that cost us sixth.

"There were points in the race [in Abu Dhabi] when we were mathematically ahead of McLaren, as before we pitted we were running fifth and sixth, but you've got to wait until the end.

"We're happy-ish. From where we were in Spa, sixth was achievable, but seventh is not bad.

"In Spa we were last, so to come back to seventh was pretty good."

Szafnauer also paid tribute to Ocon, who put in another feisty drive on his last outing with the team before he becomes Mercedes' reserve driver for 2019.

"He had a great race," he said. "He had some great battles with [Max] Verstappen again, clean ones, and I think at one point he avoided Verstappen running into him.

"Had he stayed on his natural line, Verstappen would have hit him. We'll miss him, but he won't be gone forever."

shares
comments
Abu Dhabi F1 test: Charles Leclerc fastest for Ferrari on day two

Previous article

Abu Dhabi F1 test: Charles Leclerc fastest for Ferrari on day two

Next article

Red Bull's late season F1 surge 'confusing' - Daniel Ricciardo

Red Bull's late season F1 surge 'confusing' - Daniel Ricciardo
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams McLaren , Force India
Author Adam Cooper
The toe-in-water origins of Lotus’s groundbreaking F1 journey Plus

The toe-in-water origins of Lotus’s groundbreaking F1 journey

In the first part of our history of Lotus, DAMIEN SMITH recalls how Formula 1 wasn’t an immediate priority for team founder Colin Chapman – but once he got a taste for it he just couldn’t stop…

How Hamilton’s qualifying record compares to Senna and Schumacher Plus

How Hamilton’s qualifying record compares to Senna and Schumacher

Lewis Hamilton has just become the first driver to record 100 world championship Formula 1 pole positions. Time to revisit a debate we discussed when he reached 150 front row starts in 2020.

Formula 1
May 8, 2021
Why sustainability is being mandated by F1 Plus

Why sustainability is being mandated by F1

Continuing to be socially acceptable as public views shift globally is vitally important to the future of motor racing, says PAT SYMONDS - especially in Formula 1, the championship that represents the technological peak

Formula 1
May 8, 2021
The Barcelona practice times that prove Red Bull's title credentials, and heap pressure on Verstappen Plus

The Barcelona practice times that prove Red Bull's title credentials, and heap pressure on Verstappen

Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes led the way in Friday practice for the 2021 Spanish Grand Prix, but there was one big encouraging sign for Red Bull. The trouble is, it looks like making good on that gain will require its superstar driver to avoid repeating a mistake made today that left him well down the FP2 order

Formula 1
May 7, 2021
Why McLaren doesn’t doubt Ricciardo can escape his ‘dark’ place Plus

Why McLaren doesn’t doubt Ricciardo can escape his ‘dark’ place

Three points finishes from as many starts represents a decent opening innings on paper, but Daniel Ricciardo has endured a tough start to his McLaren career - only magnified his team-mate's excellent form. Yet both he and the team have good reason to expect a turnaround soon

Formula 1
May 6, 2021
What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors Plus

What needs to “change” for Red Bull is ending Verstappen’s errors

OPINION: Going up against the dominant force of Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton was always going to demand the best from Red Bull and Max Verstappen. But after making a couple more errors during the Portuguese Grand Prix, the Dutch driver showed there's a small gap he still needs to close in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight

Formula 1
May 5, 2021
The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix Plus

The "subtle" Red Bull upgrades that kept it in the Portugal F1 mix

Red Bull's Portuguese Grand Prix fortunes were decidedly second best to Mercedes', but the result skews the potential that the team had at Portimao. With a new set of updates, the team looks good going forward into the rest of 2021's spicy F1 competition

Formula 1
May 3, 2021
Portuguese Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Portuguese Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 Portuguese GP will for several drivers go down as a weekend of missed opportunities amid imperfect track conditions that caused struggles with tyre warmup. But the performances of a select few stood out from the crowd

Formula 1
May 3, 2021