New Delhi: After a good result in the European Grand Prix, Force India is now preparing for Silverstone, the home race for Paul Di Resta and most of the team's staff. Much interest will surround a rule clarification that will prevent teams from using engine mapping to blow exhaust gases into the diffuser when the driver is off the throttle. Team Principal, Dr. Vijay Mallya, though is optimistic about the British Grand Prix and said he was happy with the performance in Valencia. Excerpts
Adrian took a solid ninth place in Valencia on a day when 24 cars finished. Were you pleased with that outcome?
We were very happy with the performance of the car. A little bit disappointed that we didn't get eighth, but we were all taken by surprise that Alguersuari made only two stops. He had the 20 seconds advantage of one less pit stop, and there was not very much we could do. Adrian drove a perfect race. Paul was also going extremely well. We could have done better with his pit stops, but that's racing I guess. We targeted the Renaults, and we beat them, we targeted the Saubers as well, and beat them. A Toro Rosso slipped past with one less pit stop, but things are going in the right direction.
Did Valencia make up for the disappointment of two retirements in Canada?
Of course I'm very happy. I still say Montreal was points thrown away, but I guess in those conditions one just has to accept that's racing. It's a lot tougher this year, a lot more competitive than it was last year, so we've got to be on top of our game.
And it was good for Adrian to bounce back after Montreal?
Absolutely, you can see it in his level of confidence and you can see it in the smile on his face. He's obviously feeling good. Motivation is half the game. So we'll take some positives away from Valencia, and go to Silverstone on a high.
Do you think that the car will be competitive there?
For Silverstone we have a new package, and we'll see what happens with the blowing rule changes. That could have an impact - we'll have to assess what. And we'll have a package for Germany, so obviously now we want to start scoring points regularly.
Do you see Silverstone as one of the biggest events of the year for the team?
With the number of Indians in Britain, and the number of Force India fans who come to Silverstone, it's obviously a very important race for us. It's like a second home Grand Prix. India obviously this year will be the home Grand Prix for us, but Silverstone has always been a home away from home.
The 1.6-litre V6 turbo has been confirmed for 2014. Do you support that concept?
I personally endorse the environmentally friendly concept of the engine, but we also want an engine that maintains the thrill and noise of F1. From a promoter's points of view, or a sponsor's point of view, that's very important. Also manufacturers have to be able to offer a package at reasonable cost, or at least that's what small teams like us would require.