The Brit is hoping to finish in the top 10 for the seventh consecutive race at the Buddh International Circuit, which is a track that he enjoys racing around. Looking ahead to the up-coming race weekend he said: “This is such a great racetrack – it’s fast, flowing and challenging. It’s pretty technical too, which is quite unusual for a fast circuit, but the flow from one corner to the next means that positioning the car is quite critical if you don’t want to fall out of the rhythm and lose time.
“Track positioning is also important because several areas of the circuit are extremely wide, and narrow down from corner-entry to exit. The long back straight will once again make it important to balance the car’s gearing and downforce for maximum speed with DRS. That straight, and the braking zone into Turn Four, are probably the most straightforward places on the circuit upon which to overtake. In fact, the rest of the circuit is quite fast, with only a single racing line, so trying to get past during the rest of the lap is pretty tricky.”
Sharing his expectations for the up-coming race weekend, he said: “The last few races have shown that, realistically, we’ll once again be fighting for the minor points. Still, I enjoyed my races in Korea and particularly Japan – where it was both satisfying and unusual to be armed with fresh tyres and able to pick off cars on older rubber, as opposed to the other way round – so I’ll be looking to take the fight to some of the faster cars once again next weekend.”
Team-mate Sergio Perez is hoping for a smoother race weekend after suffering a string of misfortunes at the last few rounds. “It’s been frustrating to see decent results slip away from me, but I’m confident that we’ll be able to turn things around quickly,” he said.
“With the race skipping a year for 2014, I hope we can help make this year’s event particularly memorable. We know we don’t have the machinery to fight the top four teams, but there’s always fierce competition around the fringes of the top 10; scrapping for points might not be what Vodafone McLaren Mercedes is all about, but it’s nonetheless satisfying to nail the set-up and the strategy and drive a perfect race. That’ll be my aim again this weekend.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic