New Force India F1 car has big potential - Sergio Perez

Sergio Perez believes Force India's new Formula 1 car has "big potential" following his first taste of the VJM09

New Force India F1 car has big potential - Sergio Perez

The team launched its new F1 challenger on Monday morning, before development driver Alfonso Celis Jr was entrusted with its first day of running.

Perez took over on Tuesday, setting a time of 1m23.650s on the super-soft compound to be third-fastest for the day, behind the ultra-soft shod Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo.

"Very good, very positive," the Mexican driver said.

"I am very happy with my first day in the car, there is big potential that we have to exploit out of this car.

"I certainly feel comfortable and happy to be here in the first day.

"We more or less managed to complete the whole programme that we were hoping to do today.

"When you have days like this, on your first day in the car, definitely it's a good thing."

After a troubled 2014/15 winter including delays as it moved to Toyota's windtunnel in Cologne, Force India missed last year's opening pre-season test, then ran its old car at the second.

While a 2015 car made its debut in the final test at Barcelona, it was not a full package until the team's B-spec update was introduced mid-season at Silverstone.

From there, Perez and team-mate Nico Hulkenberg helped Force India to its best finish of fifth in the constructors' championship.

The difference between last year and 2016, with a definitive race car, bodes well, Perez feels.

"If you compare where we were last year, it's a couple of seconds difference, already," he added.

"We managed to improve a lot throughout the year last year, and today the starting point is pretty strong.

"It's making a huge difference, being able to focus on understanding our new car.

"We did the same last year, but we did it during the races.

"We took a couple of races to understand the car and to learn how to work with it.

"We are in a much better position than we were last year, so I'm very optimistic."

shares
comments
Barcelona F1 test: Sebastian Vettel fastest again on day two

Previous article

Barcelona F1 test: Sebastian Vettel fastest again on day two

Next article

McLaren's Alonso believes Mercedes looks 'stronger than ever' in F1

McLaren's Alonso believes Mercedes looks 'stronger than ever' in F1
Load comments
The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team Plus

The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team

Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Autosport's technical consultant

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence Plus

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence

In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding 
into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? STUART CODLING talks to the man in charge

Formula 1
Oct 17, 2021
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Plus

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Plus

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021
Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers Plus

Why F1’s approach to pole winners with grid penalties undermines drivers

OPINION: Valtteri Bottas is credited with pole position for the 2021 Turkish Grand Prix, despite being beaten in qualifying. This is another example of Formula 1 and the FIA scoring an own goal by forgetting what makes motorsport magic, with the Istanbul race winner also a victim of this in the championship’s recent history

Formula 1
Oct 13, 2021
Turkish Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Turkish Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a day that the number two Mercedes enjoyed a rare day in the sun, the Turkish Grand Prix produced several standout drives - not least from a driver who has hit a purple patch of late

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for shock Turkish GP glory Plus

The hidden factors that thwarted Hamilton's bid for shock Turkish GP glory

Starting 11th after his engine change grid penalty, Lewis Hamilton faced a tough task to repeat his Turkish Grand Prix heroics of 2020 - despite making strong early progress in the wet. Instead, his Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas broke through for a first win of the year to mitigate Max Verstappen re-taking the points lead

Formula 1
Oct 11, 2021
How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form Plus

How pitstops evolved into an F1 art form

A Formula 1 pitstop is a rapid-fire blend of high technology and human performance. PAT SYMONDS describes how the science of margin gains makes stops so quick

Formula 1
Oct 10, 2021