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'Good decision to join Force India'
April 13, 2008 17:28 IST
Giancarlo Fisichella vividly remembers how his decision to join Force India evoked sneers from his peers. But it took him just three races to embarrass the naysayers and the veteran Italian driver says he now feels vindicated.
Then a Renault refugee, Fisichella's decision to join the Vijay Mallya-owned side was ridiculed in some quarters, considering how the team, in its Spyker avatar, struggled with the backmarker's tag for the 2007 season.
But much to everyone's surprise, Fisichella, despite driving a comparatively disadvantaged car, was seen fighting with Renault drivers for positions on more than one occasion.
And, Fisichella argues, it proves that his decision to join the team was not a wrong one.
"I am very happy to be fighting with them [Renault drivers] as it shows that Force India's project is a very promising one and that I made a good decision to join the team," the Italian, into his 13th Formula One season, told the official Formula One website.
Asked if giving his former employers a good run for their money gave him some sort of satisfaction, Fisichella said, "Yes it is. Especially because everyone thought that Fernando [Alonso] was going to save the team and Renault spent a lot of time and money to give him a good car.
"In fact, in the first three races of 2007, I performed better with them than he has done so far this year," he said.
Analysing his own performance behind the VJM01 car, Fisichella said, "It's all according to plan. Except for the first race in Australia where we missed an early chance to score points."
According to him, all the aero updates had delivered the expected improvements in performance of the Force India cars.
"My positive feeling at the team has contributed to achieving very respectable results," he added.
Fisichella twice came agonisingly close to make it to the second qualifying session and the Roman said, "It is my first priority. But in Australia and Bahrain we made some strategy mistakes while Q2 was in my reach."
Though Fisichella has emerged as the guiding force for the side, his talented younger team-mate Adrian Sutil is yet to live up to expectations.
Fisichella, however, threw his weight behind the talented German youngster and said it is only a matter of time before Sutil hits the straps.
"I think it is only a matter for him to adjust to this car and its different driving approach. He is quick and he will soon show it," he said.
Talking about next week's test session in Barcelona, he said, "It's just a planned aero package. Other major improvements will come for Monaco, and shortly after we will have a new front suspension. The seamless gearbox will arrive only in Budapest."
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