High on confidence after their double finish in Australian Grand Prix, Force India Formula One team drove impressively on the opening day of practice at the Malaysian Grand Prix in Kuala Lumpur on Friday.
Under cloudy skies, Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil recorded times just over a second from the fastest lap of the day. Fisichella came 12th and 19th in the morning and afternoon sessions while Sutil finished 15th and 16th at the Sepang International Circuit.
Last week in the Australian Grand Prix, Force India secured two top-12 finishes. Sutil finished in 10th position and Fisichella 12th, marking the team's best result since its 2008 debut.
In the practice session Friday, both drivers compared the soft and hard tyre compounds available this weekend over both long and short runs, fine-tuned the set-up and reacclimatised to the tough physical pressures associated with the heat and humidity.
The only blip in the programme was an accident for Fisichella in the second practice.
"It was a pretty productive day to set us up well for the weekend. We got through all our work and had no problems with the car. We have some work to do with the set up. The soft tyres seem to work quite well, but the hard tyre at the moment is really hard and never seems to come in," Sutil said.
On the accident Fisichella said: "I just went a little bit wide as there was some graining on the tyres and I lost control of the car. It was just unlucky to go onto the gravel and into the barriers."