Force India’s Vijay Mallya: “We’ve still got our sights on the podium”

Vijay Mallya wants Force India to secure a podium finish before the year is out - Credit: Sahara Force India F1 Team

Vijay Mallya has fond memories of Spa-Francorchamps as his Sahara Force India F1 Team secured their one and only pole position in Formula 1 at the venue back in 2009, with Giancarlo Fisichella then going on to claim the teams’ first podium finish the next day.

Looking forward to the 2017 race weekend at the same venue, the team principal of the Silverstone-based outfit is hopeful of making it eleven races out of twelve where the team have scored points, with Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez eyeing up a tenth two-car top-ten finish.

Mallya feels Spa should suit the VJM10 car, as will a number of circuits still to come in 2017, and he is hopeful that they can strike for a podium at some point this season.

“Spa is always a special weekend for Formula 1,” said Mallya. “It’s one of the greatest circuits in the world and a marvellous venue to appreciate the best drivers in the fastest cars. It’s been a happy hunting ground for this team too and I’d like to think we have a good chance of adding some more memories this weekend.

“We’re over the half-way point of the season now and feeling upbeat about the remaining nine races. Along with Spa, there are some other tracks coming up that should allow us to show the speed of the VJM10. We are pushing hard with the development of this car and there are some further steps we will introduce over the next few events.

“Our consistency has been our strength this year. We’ve scored points in ten of the eleven races so far and had double points finishes in nine of those races. I’m proud of the team for this achievement and it shows that all our hard work is paying off. We’ve still got our sights on the podium for this year and if the opportunity arises I believe we are ready to take it.”