Sahara Force India F1 History and Key Personnel for 2014

Sahara Force India F1 History and Key Personnel for 2014

22.01.2014: 2014 Key Personnel Team Principal and Managing Director Dr Vijay Mallya


2014 Key Personnel


Team Principal and Managing Director        Dr Vijay Mallya
Chairman & Co-Owner                 Subrata Roy Sahara
Shareholder                    The Mol Family
Deputy Team Principal                Robert Fernley
Chief Operating Officer            Otmar Szafnauer
Technical Director                Andrew Green
Sporting Director                Andy Stevenson
Production Director                Bob Halliwell
Aerodynamics Director                Simon Phillips
Chief Designer                    Akio Haga
Chief Designer                    Ian Hall
Chief Engineer                    Tom McCullough
Race Team Operations Manager        Mark Gray
Commercial Director                Stephen Curnow
Communications Manager            Will Hings
 


Sahara Force India Team History



Sahara Force India, as the team is now known, was born in late 2007 after Dr Vijay Mallya joined forces with the Mol family, co-owners of the then Spyker team.


The 2008 season was about establishing a base from which to proceed, with veteran Giancarlo Fisichella joined by promising young talent Adrian Sutil. Indeed, Adrian provided the highlight of the season, running a brilliant fourth in the closing stages of a wet Monaco Grand Prix until he was pushed off the road by Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari. It was a difficult building year that saw the team finish tenth in the championship.


Meanwhile Dr Mallya was putting the pieces in place for future growth. Key among them was a switch for 2009 to Mercedes power and gearboxes from McLaren Applied Technologies. The change provided the team with a solid starting point from which to develop the VJM02. The improvement in form was immediately obvious, as Fisichella and Sutil moved up the grid and began to challenge for points.


The car had traditionally favoured faster circuits and at Spa Fisichella took a shock pole position and then finished a brilliant second to Raikkonen in the race. By the next event at Monza, the Italian was himself driving for Ferrari and third driver Tonio Liuzzi was promoted to a race seat. At that race Adrian underlined the speed of the car by qualifying second, setting the fastest lap, and finishing fourth. At the season’s end the team had moved up to ninth in the World Championship.


Sutil and Liuzzi continued the team’s improving form into 2010. Adrian became a regular points-scorer, taking a best of fifth place in both Malaysia and Belgium, while Tonio had less luck but earned a good sixth in Korea. The progress was emphasised by a seventh place in a championship which now included three new teams, while Adrian earned 11th in the drivers’ standings.


In 2011 the team continued to move forward as reserve driver Paul Di Resta was promoted to a race seat alongside Sutil. Both men challenged for points at nearly every race and the team ultimately earned sixth place, narrowly missing out on fifth.


Paul was the best placed 2011 rookie in 13th, while Adrian was in ninth, beaten only by the drivers from Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes. October 2011 also saw the signing of a historic partnership with Sahara India Pariwar who became co-owners of the team.


2012 saw the team build on the strong foundations of 2011 as Nico Hulkenberg was promoted from third driver duties to a race seat alongside Paul. Recognised as one of the most exciting driver line-ups on the grid, the pair were closely matched all season with both men securing career-best fourth place finishes.


Despite a challenging start to the campaign, the team scored points in 80% of the races, earning 109 points and seventh place in the standings. The season ended on a high note as Nico led 30 laps of the Brazilian Grand Prix.


A wisely planned pre-season testing heralded a brilliant start of 2013 for the team. Adrian Sutil, returning to the team to partner Di Resta, led the Australian Grand Prix on the way to the first of many double points finishes for the team.


A fourth place by Di Resta in Bahrain and a fifth place for Sutil on the streets of Monaco saw the team climb up to fifth in the Constructors’ Championship before a mid-season change of  tyre construction by suppliers Pirelli hurt the competitiveness of the VJM06. A strong end of the season resulted in the team reclaiming sixth position in the standings and looking optimistically ahead to the 2014 season.


 

- Sahara Force India  - also photo

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22.01.2014 / MaP

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