Force India confirms Di Resta

Paul di Resta, Australian GP 2010

Paul di Resta, Australian GP 2010 

 © The Cahier Archive

In a move that has been widely anticipated, the Force India F1 team has announced that driver Paul di Resta will join Adrian Sutil for the 2011 season.

Di Resta was Force India's third driver for 2010, running in a number of practice sessions thoughout the season, while also winning the German DTM touring car championship.

Di Resta said, "Naturally I am thrilled to be making my race debut this season. Becoming an F1 driver has been a long-held ambition of mine, something I've wanted to do since I first stepped into a kart, and to finally realise it feels amazing. I've worked really hard for this opportunity throughout my career and to get it with Force India, a young team that's got ambitions as big as mine, is genuinely exciting. I can't wait to be on the grid in Bahrain, it can't come soon enough."

Adrian Sutil will continue for the team for his fifth season, and said, "I made my F1 debut with the team back in 2007 and we've worked together since then, so to stay for another year here feels very right. I've always said that I feel good in this team, it feels like family and when you feel good, you are confident and can push to your maximum. We've made some good progress together over the past four years and I'm excited to be part of the the team when it takes the next step, which is hopefully to become a front running team. We have the same ambitions so it makes a lot of sense to achieve them together."

Nico Hulkenberg, who left Williams F1 at the end of last season, has been unable to find another race drive, and has been announced as the team's reserve driver.

Hülkenberg said, "I am happy I can stay in F1 in 2011. I am looking forward to working with Force India and I am sure the team will continue improving in the future. I appreciate the team trusting me by signing a long-term contract. I will do my very best to live up to expectations."

Team owner Vijay Mallya said, "I am genuinely excited by the drivers we will be fielding in 2011. I believe that the combination of talent we've assembled gives us one of the strongest line-ups on the grid: Adrian has matured into one of F1's most consistent and highly-rated young drivers, while Paul is, I believe, a real star of the future. He has won in every category in his career and this base speed was in evidence when he got in the car on Fridays last year. With Nico, signing him was too good an opportunity to let by. He showed a good racing head and talent and I was amazed by his control in Brazil last year. Together I think they are a formidable partnership and will help take us to the next level of performance."

Vitantonio Liuzzi, who has a contract with the team for this season, has thus been left without a ride.

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