The Silverstone-based Sahara Force India team enjoyed a successful weekend at an action-packed Monaco Grand Prix as both cars finished in point-scoring positions, write Colin and James Beckett.
Adrian Sutil scored his best finish since returning to F1 at the start of this season after the German racer drove a controlled race.
His Scottish team-mate, Paul di Resta, who suffered disappointment during qualifying, took advantage of others’ misfortunes in the race to climb to ninth by the fall of the chequered flag.
Sutil said afterwards: “Fifth place feels fantastic. It’s just the result we needed and I’m very happy right now.
“The car felt very good and we made the most of the chances that came our way. It was difficult to move forward in the first half of the race when I was stuck in the train of cars, but the red flag opened up some more opportunities.
“It meant that everybody was on the same sprint strategy until the end of the race. I noticed that the hairpin was an area where there was a chance to overtake so I tried it with Jenson and it worked.
“Then I did the same with Fernando and it worked once again. So I think I showed that overtaking is possible in Monaco. The team did an excellent job all weekend and we definitely deserved this result today.”
Having shown his anger at missing out on participating in the Q2 session on Saturday afternoon, Paul di Resta was in a happier frame of mind at the end of the race.
He said: “Given where we started, we went with an aggressive strategy and it probably would have paid off without the safety cars.
“The pace was strong, but I was stuck behind lots of traffic in the early part of the race. I managed to pass a few cars going into turn one but towards the end of the race the cars were more bunched up and it was not so easy.
“I was stuck behind Vergne after the restart and I had one good chance to overtake but he defended very well.
“Fortunately with the cars ahead battling and making contact I made up some positions and scored a couple of points.
“So after the disappointment of qualifying, the boys did a great job and it’s good to continue my run of finishes in the points.”