It was a mixed Friday for Force India in Canada today as Paul di Resta finished the second practice session an impressive sixth on the timesheets whilst team-mate Adrian Sutil was forced to end his day early after colliding with a wall in Montreal.
To make matters worse for Sutil, he had to sit out the morning practice session as the team gave Nico Hulkenberg an outing in the car, and so can expect a busy morning tomorrow:
“I had quite a big workload to get through this afternoon so it's a shame to lose so much track time,” remarked Sutil. “I was pushing hard on the option tyres and touched the wall on the exit of turn 7. That caused some damage to the suspension and I had to park the car.
“However, I think we still have a nice balance and we seem to be quite competitive this weekend. There's a lot of work to do tomorrow morning because I missed a couple of long runs and I haven't done many laps on the option tyre, but I'm sure we can still have a good weekend.”
In contrast to the 16 laps completed by Sutil today, di Resta can boast a tally of 60 over the two sessions. The Scot was sounding very positive after his first experiences of driving an F1 car around this Montreal track:
“Today was really about familiarising myself with the circuit and getting up-to-speed,” he explained. “The track was quite low grip in the first session with a lot of dust on the road, but the conditions had improved quite a bit by the afternoon. We made a few changes to the car, looking at the ride height and aero balance, and I think the direction we've taken has been pretty positive. There is still some more speed to come, but I'm pleased with the progress we've made today.”
Circuit Engineering Director Dominic Harlow also thinks that the car is performing well here in Canada, but is wary of potential rain as the weekend continues.
“We ran our usual Friday programme today, and also had a new medium tyre compound available as a precursor to Valencia,” he said. “This performed well in FP1, whilst Nico and Paul evaluated the Canada aerodynamic package for the VJM04.
“In FP2 the circuit continued to evolve, and Paul compared the race tyres available here. Adrian touched a wall during his outing on the options and so wasn’t able to complete the session. As we’ve seen today that is easily done in Canada.
2All in all the car is performing quite well and we are looking forward to the qualifying session tomorrow and, of course, trying to weigh up what the weather will do on Sunday.”