F1: Force India set to struggle for points until Austria

Nico Hulkenberg runs off during qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix. The team currently sits seventh in the constructor's standings with seven points.

Dan Istitene/Getty Images

Force India continues to pay the price for the late completion of the VJM08, and until the aero update package arrives in Austria, Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez are set to be fighting to get out of Q1.

In China, the Mexican did at least claim 11th after running an unusual three-stop strategy, while Hulkenberg was an early retirement.

“I think we did the best we could with what we had, and it was a close as we could get to the points,” said deputy team principal Bob Fernley. “For the team it’s a big frustrating when you’re used to being a regular Q3 contender and looking at continually bringing in the points. But we’ve got some issues, McLaren have got some issues, you’ve got to continually knuckle down and deliver.”

Fernley says while the much anticipated update package won’t be seen until Austria, it would not have provided a useful benefit at Monaco and Montreal, which are not typical tracks.

“It’s not really delayed. We were trying to aim to get it for Monaco, but there’s not really any advantage in doing it for Monaco. And Montreal it’s not really a huge advantage either. So Austria gives us the opportunity to not only fit it but also test it.

“We’re optimistic that the gains will get us right back into the pack. That’s the key thing for us. And if we can get back, we can fight for points.”

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