Force India's test session comes to an end | india | Hindustan Times
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Force India's test session comes to an end

The teams will return to Jerez on January 14 for the first test session of 2008 season.

india Updated: Dec 08, 2007 17:02 IST

Force India, the Formula One team co-owned by liquor baron Vijay Mallya, fielded two young drivers, Roldan Rodriguez and Giedo van der Garde, for the fourth and final day of testing at Circuit de Jereze, Spain, but still struggled for pace as the F1 circus went into a winter break here.

The teams will return to Jerez on January 14 for the first test session of 2008 season.

Van der Garde, the 22-year old Dutchman, on Friday clocked a best of 1:22:321 seconds over 81 laps while Spaniard Rodriguez, 24, had a 1:22:508 while completing the same number of laps, according to information reaching here.

Force India team deployed seven drivers over four days of testing, but the list, significantly, did not include the highly-rated 24-year old Germany Adrian Sutil, who is likely to bag one of the two race seats.

Among those who tested over the first three days were veterans Giancarlo Fisichella (Italy, 32) and Ralf Schumacher (Germany, 35) both without a team for the 2008 season, Vitantonio Liuzzi (Italy, 27), Frank Montagny (France, 29) and Christian Klien (Austria, 24).

Topping the timesheet was Sebastian Vettel (Toro Rosso) who clocked 1:18:213 on slick tyres while Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber) was second quickest (1:18:410), ahead of Nico Rosberg (Williams, 1:18:796) and Michael Schumacher (Ferrari, 1:19.136 secs).

A release from Force India said that over four days, the team covered over 2,600 kilometres as it worked through an extensive programme of chassis development, evaluation of the new 2008 standard electronics package and testing the 2009 'slick' development Bridgestone Potenza tyres for the first time.

Mallya, chairman of the team said: "The test has been a very fruitful one for the team. Not only have we demonstrated the strong potential of the team by attracting five highly talented drivers to test for us, it's also been very motivating for the team to have the benefit of their experience to help develop the car.

"This week has had a very positive impact on the motivation of the mechanics, engineers and all involved and has shown the sporting community that we are serious about what Force India wants to achieve in F1."