The Force India confirmed today the expected drivers line up for the 2008 season. Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil will lead the team for its debut 2008 FIA Formula One World Championship campaign. Vitantonio Liuzzi will fulfill a test and reserve driver role for Force India.
“I am looking forward to joining Force India for the coming season. At the test in Jerez, I was very impressed with the team’s professionalism and commitment to move forward and I hope that my experience will help them achieve these goals. Contrary to what people may think, this was not my only opportunity, it was the best one: with new owners and a competitive budget, I really think we can shake things up next year. I feel motivated and ready to help Force India get points on a regular basis.”
“I am very happy to stay with Force India for another season. There was interest from other teams, but the opportunity to stay with a growing team that has strong ambitions is very positive for me at this stage in my career. I am also very excited about the opportunity to work with Giancarlo. He is very experienced and has driven for a World Championship winning team, which can only help both myself and Force India learn and move forward.”
“I am very pleased to be able to help Force India in their testing and development programme this year. With increased resources there will be much more input and emphasis into the team’s testing, and the test driver’s role will be crucial to helping progress. I know I can play a big part in the team as it grows, which is a good opportunity for me going forward.”
Dr. Vijay Mallya:
“The Force India Formula One Team is a serious project and we wanted to make a statement to this effect with our driver line-up. Money is not the issue now: we need drivers who will push the team and give us direction. The race line-up of Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil is a very good one, balancing both speed and experience, and Tonio will provide the team with solid support in his testing programme. I think we have a very strong driver line-up for 2008.”
This is the line up I have expected for quite some time and I think it is one that does make sense. Fisichella is an experienced driver and he should be useful to a team that is pretty much starting up from a scratch. Having a driver of Vitantonio Liuzzi calibre as a test driver will not harm them at all. I do not expect Fisichella and Liuzzi to continue as race driver duo here forever and I believe that a promise of a future race drive is part of Liuzzi’s package with Force India F1 team …