| NEW DELHI, March 27
NEW DELHI, March 27 Paul Di Resta believes Force
India could match Sergio Perez's surprising Malaysian Grand Prix
podium if circumstances go their way this season.
Perez finished second for Sauber at rain-lashed Sepang on
Sunday to become the first Mexican driver in 41 years on the
Formula One podium. He could have won had he not run wide with
five laps to go while chasing Ferrari's Fernando Alonso.
Force India have only once finished in the top three, when
Giancarlo Fisichella finished second in the 2009 Belgian Grand
Prix, but Di Resta felt another visit was in the realms of
possibility for his team.
"I don't think you can rule that out," the Scot told
reporters at the Buddh International Circuit on the outskirts of
"You have to be ready for that (the opportunity of a
podium), should that happen. It's going to be a massive task and
a difficult one," said the driver who turns 26 next month.
"You want it to happen, you go and prepare yourself for the
weekend, if you can. We only saw this weekend what Sauber
achieved, and Perez (achieved).
"We have to believe that it can happen to us, if every
circumstance goes the right way."
Di Resta has made a strong start to the season, collecting
seven points from two races, while team mate Nico Hulkenberg
managed a couple from his ninth place finish in Malaysia.
Di Resta identified Sauber, Williams and Toro Rosso as Force
India's chief midfield rivals and said was looking forward to
the new package his team would introduce before the series
shifts to Europe in May.
As much a boost for the Silverstone-based team would be the
healthy competition between their drivers, said Hulkenberg.
"I don't get along with Paul at all, we hate each other,"
the 24-year-old German joked before turning serious. "We both
are pretty hungry for success. (It's the) early stage of our
Formula One career.
"We are pushing each other very hard on the circuit for our
own good and for the team's good. We will keep our head down,
trying to make the car faster, ourselves faster.
"To come away with seventh and ninth (positions) in Malaysia
was a huge success, looking from where we started and in
qualifying, things didn't look bright," said Hulkenberg.
"The speed is not where we want it to be at the moment but
it's early days in the season with only two weekends, 18 more to
go. So there are plenty of opportunities to develop the car,
make the car faster and maximise our performance from here."
(Editing by Alan Baldwin)
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