Formula 1

Force India’s Otmar Szafnauer: “Seventh and eighth on the grid is a well-deserved result”

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Sergio Pérez - Sahara Force India F1 Team
Credit: Sahara Force India F1 Team

Otmar Szafnauer feels the Qualifying result at the Baku Street Circuit was good confirmation that the hard work being put in by everyone within the Sahara Force India F1 Team is paying off, with Esteban Ocon and Sergio Pérez locking out the fourth row of the grid.

The team has been quick all weekend long, with Ocon just over a second down on the pole time of Sebastian Vettel, while team-mate Pérez was only 0.024 seconds back, with both comfortably clear of the Renault Sport Formula One Team drivers.

The COO of the Silverstone-based team said the Qualifying result was well deserved around a track that has usually suited Force India, with Pérez having finished on the podium in Azerbaijan back in 2016.

“Seventh and eighth on the grid is a well-deserved result and confirms that all our hard work is paying off,” said Szafnauer.  “We’ve been competitive since first practice yesterday and improved the car with each session in the lead up to qualifying.

“It’s a track that has always suited us and both drivers love driving here.”

Szafnauer hopes the upward swing in performance continues into race day in Baku as they bid to add to the solitary point they have earned in the first three races of the season.

“Qualifying is only part of the job and there’s a big task ahead of us tomorrow,” said Szafnauer.  “It’s never an easy race here so converting today’s performance into solid points won’t be easy, but we will do our best to bring home the result of which we are capable.”

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