Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Come March the 15th

I'm going to switch loyalties and support Force India as my primary team. Somehow, I don't really like Raikkonen, and Ferrari has never been the same since Michael left. Hence, the decision.

I never really liked the Force India name but I seem to have grown into it, and there is something exciting about having a F1 team named after the country you come from. Apart from that, the most brilliant thing was when Mallya said that he realised that buying the team was "the easiest part". So he's actually committed to spending on research, and I firmly believe that F1 too can be "outsourced" to India, in the sense that you can do the same technological wonders, but with a smaller budget. Mallya has doubled the budget from what Spyker had. Its still pretty small compared to what some of the huge teams have, but if they tap into Indian engineering talent which would be available at a much cheaper rate, it could mean much more.

There already seems to have been some substantial progress. Take a look at this testing data from Barcelona.

Day One:

9. Adrian Sutil, Force India, 1:23.091
12. Vitantonio Liuzzi, Force India, 1:23.239

Leader: : Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, 1:22.276

Day Two :

6. Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India, 1:22.516
10. Vitantonio Liuzzi, Force India, 1:22.942

Leader: Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, 1:21.234

Day Three:

12. Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India, 1:22.233
16. Adrian Sutil, Force India, 1:22.521

Leader: Jarno Trulli, Toyota, 1:20.801

Those are pretty good timings throughout. True, we won't know the true standings till Melbourne in two weeks time - but target for this season should be a double digit points tally for the team. Definitely achievable.

All figures from various charts on formula1.com

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