Q & A with Adrian Sutil

Adrian Sutil starts his second season in Formula One, keen to build on a rookie season where he impressed with his speed but, with a few crashes, left question marks about his ultimate potential

Q & A with Adrian Sutil

But with an improved Force India car, and a new teammate in Giancarlo Fisichella, the German is excited about the opportunities that 2008 will bring him.

Autosport.com heard from the German about his feelings on the year ahead.

Q. Can you tell us about the new car?

Adrian Sutil: The new car has improved, that is for sure. The first day was quite good in my opinion. The entrance into corners, the stability, is better. And it is easier to drive. So there is more coming, perhaps three to four tenths for the Melbourne Grand Prix. So I think it is quite a good update and I am very confident to be competitive in Australia.

Q. How surprised are you with the step forward the team have made, because sometimes wind tunnel numbers don't match what is found on the track?

AS: Exactly. I was careful with all these expectations about what the engineers said, but I am happy in the first day that we appeared to gain three or four tenths, and we are expecting that again for Melbourne. If we do that, then we should have a step of seven tenths, which could get us into Q2.

Q. So that is the immediate target?

AS: Yes, Q2 is a good target to have.

Q. You've been halfway up the timesheets in testing this week. Is that a reflection of what we can expect from Melbourne?

AS: Maybe we are a little too far at the front at the moment. I don't want to say if we are low fuel or not, but I think the other cars can show more - with new tyres. We saw last week in Barcelona the time of Ferrari, and this is a quick time. The other times, you can never trust them.

Q. How do you think you compare to other teams?

AS: You can watch the long runs, as everyone has nearly the same fuel amount. And if you watch a 10-lap run, you can see if they are fast or not.

Q. And the conclusion here?

AS: We are not bad.

Q. Last year you were driving against Christijan Albers and Sakon Yamamoto. Will it be harder racing against Giancarlo Fisichella, because your teammate is your best reference?

AS: Yes, my teammate is my best reference. I have a good teammate and the test driver is very good. We have a good combination. Last year Christijan was a good driver but during the season he got some problems, even though we were quite evenly matched in testing.

At the moment I see it nearly the same. With Giancarlo we are very close together, also Tonio is a very fast driver. And it is much better to have them on board. It is a challenge, and you are more with a smile on the track.

Q. So it is better than with Christijan?

AS: I wouldn't say that. As I said we were very close in the winter but he had problems in the race weekends - making some mistakes. But in terms of speed he was a really good driver.

Q. At the end of last year there were rumours of options with other teams, but you decided to stay here. How easy or difficult was it?

AS: Well, it was easy because the other things didn't work out. We tried, and we were talking, but the truth is I had to stay here and I need to try to make a good performance again to bring my name into a good position again.

Are you enjoying driving the car without traction control?

AS: Yes, absolutely. I think it is a good change for F1. It makes for more interesting races, and I think we will see more fighting and more action. It is difficult but I think it is good. It is good for the sport.

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