Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley is looking beyond this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix for signs of progress with the VJM11.
Earlier this season, Force India struggled with correlation between new parts developed in the wind tunnel and their respective performance on track. That led to a delay in introducing a new front wing while the team rectified the issue. And while it is now closer to re-introducing those updates, it won’t do so in Montreal as the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is a track on which Force India expects to be strong with its current specification of car.
Asked if there will be more upgrades introduced in Canada, Fernley told RACER: “We’re getting there.
“There are little bits coming — a little bit came to Monaco, there will be a little bit there — but they are very circuit specific. So they don’t necessarily correlate to the whole package. I think we’ll go back to getting that setup balance and then making sure the correlation is there once we get to Paul Ricard.
“The front wing affected the balance of the car. It was very efficient, but I think we’re getting close to being able to reintroducing that. I hope it’s Paul Ricard, that would be ideal.”
And Fernley says he is not overly concerned about waiting to reintroduce the new parts, playing down the 20-point deficit to fourth-placed Renault due to the length of the season.
“I don’t think in our minds that we’ve ever lost the fact that we’re best of the rest, so we may be fooling ourselves but we’re still going ahead with that! We always look at a whole season with reliability, mistakes, everything.
“Look at [Fernando] Alonso in Monaco, he had a major reliability issue and it only takes those things coming in for them not scoring points and we have an exceptional day like in Baku or something like that and the gap has gone in almost one race. But it can also be the other way round, if we have a bad race and they have an exceptional one then the gap increases.
“I think if you look at our reliability record over the seasons it’s pretty impressive. We’re one of the most reliable teams on average, so it is a very strong part for us.”