Launched yesterday at Silverstone was the new Force India VJM10. The car features the new front and rear wings and a shark fin, with silver as the dominant colour.
Speaking ahead of the unveiling, team boss Vijay Mallya said “Many commentators of the sport have said that we punch well above our weight. It speaks volumes for the passion, creativity and talent of my team and everyone at the factory. This passion is only going to get more intense. The passion to improve further is going to be pretty relevant in 2017.”
“If we did not dream big, we would not have finished 4th in the World Championship last year. We have never even had conversations in private that we cannot break into top three. That is our objective, and we are going to give it our best shot.”
Commenting on an article that stated poorer teams such as Force India would suffer in the arms race Mallya commented “Its not the amount of arms you have but the quality of your weaponry”
Unveiling the VJM10 were drivers Sergio Perez and new team mate Esteban Ocon. Perez is now in his 4th season with Sahara Force India and finished 7th overall last season. Ocon who completed 9 races last year at Manor signed with Force India in November and is part of the Mercedes-Benz driver development programme.
Mallya praised Perez saying he was “a true racer, fearless, who loved to race” and on Ocon “Very, very talented. Ocon impressed us, he has limited experience in Formula 1 but he’s willing to learn”.
The new regulations for 2017 mean the cars have wider wings, bodies and larger tyres. Both Ocon and Perez spoke about how the increase in speed would mean that driving them would be more physically demanding.
Allison Remzi All images © Andy Fitzpatrick