Two crashes, no points for Force India
A tough weekend of racing for Force India resulted in the team leaving Malaysia empty handed, as penalties for collisions cost drivers points in difficult conditions in Sepang.
Both Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg were handed 10-second time penalties after they were involved in separate incidents in quick succession late in the race.
First, Perez tangled with Lotus driver Romain Grosjean as the latter attempted an overtake on the outside, before Brazilian Hulkenberg clashed with Red Bull’s Daniel Kyvat.
Despite both drivers completing the race, neither were able to record any points and as such, recorded a blank for only the third time in the pair’s 20 races.
The teammates both said they felt unfortunate to be punished, whilst Deputy Team Principal, Robert Fernley, admitted the team were lacking ‘ultimate pace’ due to the conditions.
“It was a challenging afternoon for the team, although we were unlucky not to come away with at least a point,” Fernley said.
“Both Checo and Nico gave everything in these conditions and featured in a lot of battles for the majority of the race.
“We seemed to have the measure of some of the stronger cars, but the penalties effectively cut us out of the fight for the top ten positions.
“We knew going into the race that we were lacking ultimate pace today and with a fully dry race there was not much that would disrupt the strategy or offer any opportunity to exploit.
“Now we need to regroup, continue our work back at base and come back stronger in the near future. Everyone is putting in a real effort to get us back where we belong quickly and it will be hugely rewarding when we are once more fighting closer to the front.”
Eventual winner of the Malaysian Grand Prix was Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, ahead of Mercedes’ usual double act, who took second (Hamilton) and third (Rosberg) respectively.