Force India

Coordinates: 52°04′33″N 1°01′46″W / 52.07583°N 1.02944°W

Force India
Force India
Full nameForce India
Formula One Team
(2008–2011)
Sahara Force India
Formula One Team
(2012–2018)
BaseSilverstone,
United Kingdom
Founder(s)Vijay Mallya & Michiel Mol
Noted staffSteve Curnow
Robert Fernley
Mike Gascoyne
Andrew Green
James Key
Colin Kolles
Subrata Roy
Otmar Szafnauer
Noted driversItaly Giancarlo Fisichella
Mexico Sergio Pérez
Germany Nico Hülkenberg
Italy Vitantonio Liuzzi
France Esteban Ocon
United Kingdom Paul di Resta
Germany Adrian Sutil
Previous nameSpyker F1 Team
Next nameRacing Point Force India
Formula One World Championship career
First entry2008 Australian Grand Prix
Races entered203
EnginesFerrari & Mercedes
Constructors'
Championships
0 (best finish: 4th, 2016 and 2017)
Drivers'
Championships
0
Race victories0 (best finish: 2nd, 2009 Belgian Grand Prix)
Podiums6
Points987
Pole positions1
Fastest laps5
Final entry2018 Hungarian Grand Prix

Force India Formula One Team Limited, commonly known as Force India and later Sahara Force India, was a Formula One racing team and constructor based in Silverstone, United Kingdom, with an Indian licence. The team was formed in October 2007 when a consortium led by Indian businessman Vijay Mallya and Dutch businessman Michiel Mol bought the Spyker F1 team for €88 million.[1]

After going through 29 races without scoring points, Force India won their first Formula One world championship points and podium place when Giancarlo Fisichella finished second in the 2009 Belgian Grand Prix.[2] Force India scored points again in the following race when Adrian Sutil finished fourth, and set the team's first fastest lap, at the Italian Grand Prix. The team's other podium finishes are five third-places, in the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix, 2015 Russian Grand Prix, 2016 Monaco Grand Prix, 2016 European Grand Prix and the 2018 Azerbaijan Grand Prix, all achieved by Sergio Pérez.

In October 2011, Indian company Sahara India Pariwar, purchased 42.5% of Force India F1's shares at US$100 million.[3] A few years later, Vijay Mallya could not afford enough to run Force India. In July 2018, ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix, the team announced that they had been put into administration by the High Court in London.[4]

In 2018 the team's assets were bought by a consortium of investors, named Racing Point UK and led by Lawrence Stroll, the father of then Williams driver Lance Stroll.[5] The consortium used the assets to create a new entry into the sport and the constructor that had been founded in 2008 ceased to exist prior to the 2019 Australian Grand Prix.

History

Background

The team's origins stemmed from the Jordan Grand Prix team, which entered Formula One racing in 1991 based at the Silverstone circuit. Jordan enjoyed many years in Formula One, winning four races and achieving third place in the 1999 Constructors' Championship. However, like many of the smaller teams in the 2000s, financial problems meant the team's performance dried up, and team owner Eddie Jordan sold the team to the Midland Group in early 2005.

The Midland owned team renamed Midland F1 Racing in 2006 spent two seasons at the back of grid, before owner Alex Shnaider sold the team to Spyker Cars midway through the 2006 season.[6]

Spyker F1 scored a point in 2007 and briefly led the European Grand Prix; despite this, the team once again hit financing issues,[7] and was sold on to Indian businessman Vijay Mallya, then chairman of the United Breweries Group and Michiel Mol, Spyker's Formula One Director.[1] The team, bought for €88 million,[8] was renamed as the Force India Formula One Team for the 2008 season, and retained team principal Colin Kolles, Chief Technology Officer Mike Gascoyne, and drivers were Adrian Sutil and Giancarlo Fisichella.

2008 season

Adrian Sutil 2008 Malaysia
Adrian Sutil driving for Force India at the 2008 Malaysian Grand Prix.

After retaining Adrian Sutil for the team's first season, Force India conducted winter tests for the second driver and testing roles. Ex-Renault driver Giancarlo Fisichella was chosen for the race seat, and Vitantonio Liuzzi secured the reserve role;[9] they were to drive an updated version of the Spyker F8-VIIB chassis with Ferrari engines, christened the Force India VJM01.[10] Testing of the car begun in February, after the gold, tungsten and white liveried car was launched at the Gateway of India in Mumbai.[11] With an increased budget and wind tunnels from defence company EADS,[12] the team set itself the target of beating Super Aguri, a squad which spent the previous seasons contesting at the back with Force India's predecessors.[12]

Melbourne was the scene of Force India's first race, and although the Australian Grand Prix gave the team a poor start with both drivers retiring in the first few laps,[13] the following race in Malaysia saw Fisichella's twelfth place earn the team's first finish. After disappointing results in the opening races, Sutil gave the team the chance to score its first points in the wet Monaco Grand Prix, but towards the end of the race Kimi Räikkönen's Ferrari lost control and hit Sutil's car causing immediate retirement.[14] Although a furious Gascoyne called for Räikkönen to be penalised,[15] overtakes under yellow flag conditions would have meant Sutil receiving a time penalty post-race, dropping him out of points.[16] Continuous updates to improve reliability and performance allowed the team to close the gap to the fastest teams during the mid-season, despite Super Aguri's withdrawal meaning the two cars started from the rear of the grid for the majority of races. A seamless-shift transmission introduced at Valencia marked the end of development for the car;[17] team owner Mallya had realised underinvestment and continued changes of ownership had led the team to fall behind.[17] Force India had been focusing on 2009 since Mallya brought the team, believing that the new regulations would yield better results.[18][19] Despite halting work on the VJM01, Fisichella put his car to a season-best 12th on the grid at the Italian Grand Prix during an extremely wet qualifying session; he was however to crash out during the race.[20] Fisichella continued his good form by reaching second during the Singapore round and fifth at the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix; a safety car before his pit stop prevented points in Singapore, while transmission issues in Brazil left him 18th and two laps down.[21] Force India finished the season tenth place in the Constructors' Championship, and Fisichella achieved the best finish of tenth at the Spanish Grand Prix.[21]

2009 season

Vitantonio Liuzzi 2009 Japan 3rd Free Practice 1
Vitantonio Liuzzi driving for Force India at the 2009 Japanese Grand Prix.

Force India retained the same drivers for the 2009 season.[22] The VJM02 was powered by Mercedes-Benz engines, after the team signed a five-year deal on 10 November 2008. The deal also included a supply of McLaren-Mercedes gearboxes, hydraulic systems and the KERS feature. The car was revealed on 1 March 2009.[23]

At the wet Chinese Grand Prix, Sutil almost secured Force India's first points, holding sixth place in front of Lewis Hamilton and Timo Glock with six laps remaining when aquaplaning led to the Force India car skidding off the road and crashing out of the race. At the German Grand Prix, Sutil qualified in seventh place and battled for the points, reaching second at one point, before colliding with Kimi Räikkönen after exiting the pit lane and being forced to pit again to change a broken front wing. He finished 15th.

Force India gained their first pole position in Formula One at the Belgian Grand Prix in Spa-Francorchamps, when Fisichella qualified fastest.[24] He finished the race in second position, less than a second behind Kimi Räikkönen earning Force India's first ever points and podium position. Missing the win was partially blamed on the car's lack of KERS, a system present on the Ferrari.

On 3 September 2009, Force India announced that they were releasing Fisichella from his contract to allow him to race for Ferrari for the remainder of the season. It was announced four days later that test driver Vitantonio Liuzzi would replace Fisichella for the remaining races.[25]

In qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, Sutil qualified second and Liuzzi, on his race debut for the team, qualified seventh. On race day, Sutil finished fourth and clocked the fastest lap of the race. While running fourth in the race, Liuzzi had to retire due to a transmission failure. Force India finished the season ninth in front of Scuderia Toro Rosso with 13 points, however, this did not reflect the vast improvement Force India had made from the start of the season.

2010 season

Liuzzi Bahrain 2010 (cropped)
Vitantonio Liuzzi driving for Force India at the 2010 Bahrain Grand Prix.

The team announced on 27 November 2009, that it was to keep Adrian Sutil and Vitantonio Liuzzi for the 2010 season.[26] The team tested Paul di Resta and J. R. Hildebrand at Jerez, with di Resta setting a much faster time.[27] Di Resta was confirmed as the team's test driver on 2 February 2010.[28] On 9 February 2010, Force India unveiled their new car, the VJM03, which was to be used in the 2010 season.

The 2010 season began with points in Bahrain, with Liuzzi finishing in ninth position. Sutil had qualified in tenth, but was involved in a first-lap incident with the Renault of Robert Kubica. He ultimately recovered to finish in twelfth position. In Australia, Sutil again qualified in the top ten, with Liuzzi qualifying thirteenth. Liuzzi finished the race in seventh, while Sutil retired with an engine problem. In Malaysia Sutil scored ten points with fifth and Liuzzi retired early due to a throttle problem, his first retirement of the season. In the next few races, apart from a retirement from Liuzzi, the Force Indias had quiet races in the midfield, staying mainly out of the action in front of and behind them, with Sutil scoring points in Spain. At Monaco both cars finished the race in eighth and ninth, avoiding the numerous incidents, giving the team their first double points finish. In Turkey, Sutil finished 9th scoring two points, while Liuzzi finished 13th. At the following race in Montreal, both cars finished in the points, with Liuzzi finishing 9th and Sutil in 10th.

A number of senior personnel left the team during the season, with technical director James Key being the highest-profile member, leaving to join Sauber in a similar role. Chief designer Lewis Butler, senior aerodynamicist Marianne Hinson, and commercial director Ian Phillips also left the outfit.[29]

2011 season

Adrian Sutil 2011 Malaysia FP2
Adrian Sutil driving for Force India at the 2011 Malaysian Grand Prix.

On 26 January 2011, the team announced that reserve driver Paul di Resta would be promoted to a race seat for the 2011 season, to partner Adrian Sutil.[30] The team launched their new car, the VJM04 on 8 February 2011 via an online launch. The VJM04 is the first car created under new technical director Andrew Green and developed using the resources from partners McLaren Applied Technologies and Mercedes-Benz HighPerformanceEngines.[31] In the first race of the year in Australia, Sutil and di Resta finished the race in eleventh and twelfth places respectively but were later promoted to ninth and tenth after both Sauber cars were disqualified for a technical infringement relating to the rear wing of both their cars.[32] The car was a naturally aspirated V8 producing around 900hp, it proved good for the season.

Di Resta scored more points in Malaysia but he had to retire in Turkey. Sutil finished seventh in Monaco, and ninth in Valencia. Di Resta was bound for points in Britain before a collision with Buemi, while Sutil finished sixth in Germany ahead of the Mercedes cars. Di Resta finished seventh in Hungary, eighth in Italy and took his best race result of sixth in Singapore, while Sutil added a seventh-place finish in Belgium and an eighth in Singapore. Di Resta scored another point in Korea, while at the Airtel Indian Grand Prix, Sutil scored two points with ninth place.[33] At the final race in Brazil, Sutil matched his best finish of the season with sixth place, while di Resta finished eighth, to help the team finish sixth in the Constructors' Championship, four points in arrears of fifth-placed Renault.[34]

2012 season

Paul di Resta 2012 Malaysia FP1
Paul di Resta driving for Force India at the 2012 Malaysian Grand Prix.

For their 2012 line-up, the team retained Paul di Resta and replaced Adrian Sutil with their 2011 reserve driver, Nico Hülkenberg.[35] Jules Bianchi was later named as the team's reserve driver, and will also take part in Friday practice for the team during the season.[36] The team's car, the VJM05, was launched at Silverstone on 3 February.[37]

The Force India crew tried to pull out of the 2012 Bahrain Grand Prix due to a revolution against the regime and the death of a protester.[38] However, after the team's refusal to take to the circuit, there was a confrontation between F1 chief Bernie Ecclestone and the Force India team.[39]

2013 season

Jules Bianchi 2013 Catalonia test (19-22 Feb) Day 4
Jules Bianchi driving for Force India at the pre-season test.

The 2013 line-up featured Paul di Resta for the third successive year.[40] The season also witnessed Adrian Sutil returning to the team line-up, replacing Nico Hülkenberg[41] as the team's Second Driver. The team's new car, the VJM06 was launched on 1 February 2013 at the team's base near the Silverstone Circuit.[42]

At the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, Sutil finished seventh, while di Resta finished eighth, giving the team their best ever start to a season.[43]

2014 season

Sergio Pérez Bahrain 2014
Sergio Pérez driving for Force India at the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix.

Nico Hülkenberg returned to the team for 2014, while Paul di Resta was replaced by Sergio Pérez. Adrian Sutil moved to Sauber and was replaced by Nico Hülkenberg from Sauber. Daniel Juncadella was signed by the team as a reserve driver.[44] The season opener in Australia saw Hülkenberg finish sixth while Pérez finished tenth after the disqualification of Daniel Ricciardo. This was also the first time Hülkenberg completed a lap at the Albert Park circuit. At the Bahrain Grand Prix, Pérez put Force India on the podium with a third-place finish, its first time on the podium since Spa 2009.[45] In Austria, Pérez achieved the third fastest lap in Force India's history. Force India were good after the major regulation change of hybrid engines and turbocharged powertrains.

2015 season

On 19 October 2014, the team stated Hülkenberg had secured his seat for 2015.[46] On 7 November 2014, before the Brazilian Grand Prix, Force India announced that Pérez would remain with the team for the 2015 season.[47] Pérez stated that contract negotiations were "ongoing", in regards to a further contract extension. The deal was officially confirmed two weeks later at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with Pérez signing a two-year contract, until the end of the 2016 season.[48]

Hülkenberg Japan 2015
Nico Hülkenberg driving for Force India at the 2015 Japanese Grand Prix.

Force India missed the first pre-season test in Jerez, due to an unexplained setback in the development of the Force India VJM08. It was later revealed that Force India was, according to insider Ralf Bach, "facing financial collapse," and was "currently insolvent." He also suggested that the delays in the VJM08 were due to the fact that "important parts suppliers have not been paid".[49] Bob Fernley, deputy Team Principal, later admitted that the team was likely to miss all three pre-season tests, though he said that they might use the 2014 car to do some "driver and tyre work."[50] However, Force India's 2015 car finally broke cover when Hülkenberg hit the track on day two of the third and final test at Barcelona.[51] The car was an updated version of last year's challenger and was immediately reliable. They had a good start to the season with Hülkenberg finishing in a strong seventh place in the Australian Grand Prix. However they struggled thereafter and did not score points until the Bahrain Grand Prix courtesy of an eighth-place finish by Pérez. Both drivers delivered strong results in Monaco and Austria. The team later introduced a highly modified B-spec car at the 2015 British Grand Prix,[52] featuring two distinctive vents in the nose.[53] The car was a significant step forward from its predecessor, particularly in high speed corners.[54] In Belgium, Pérez almost took the lead of the race on lap one and ultimately finished in a strong fifth place. He followed up this drive by a sixth-place finish in Monza and seventh in Singapore. In September Sahara Force India lodged a formal complaint to the European Union against Formula One for breaching competition laws.[55] At the Russian Grand Prix, Pérez put Force India on the podium with a third-place finish, its first podium since the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix.[56] Hülkenberg and Pérez finished seventh and eighth in Pérez' home race in Mexico City. This upturn in form helped Force India achieve their best placing of 5th place with 136 points in the Constructors' Championship, although scoring 19 fewer points than its predecessor. This is a remarkable achievement considering the team's financial plight and their late preparations of the season by delaying the B spec version of their car. The Force India VJM08 for 2015 was suitable for the aerodynamic changes from the 2014 season.

2016 season

Force India retained Hülkenberg and Pérez for a third successive season in 2016. It proved to be the most successful season in the team's history to date, after finishing fourth in the Constructors' Championship with 173 points.

Pérez scored his first of two podium finishes at the Monaco Grand Prix, finishing third, which was also the first time that the team had scored a podium at Monaco in any of its guises – Jordan, Midland, Spyker or Force India. Pérez finished third again two races later at the European Grand Prix in Baku.[57] At the Belgian Grand Prix the team managed to get their first double-finish within the top-five since the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix with Hülkenberg finishing fourth and Pérez finishing in fifth. As a result, the team took fourth place in the Constructors' Championship from Williams, their highest ever finishing position in the team's history.[58]

2017 season

2017 British Grand Prix (35895456816)
Esteban Ocon driving for Force India at the 2017 British Grand Prix.

In 2017, Hülkenberg left Force India to join Renault. Esteban Ocon was signed to replace him in his first full season in Formula One, having driven for Manor during the second half of the 2016 season. Pérez remained at Force India for a fourth season.

The VJM10 brought a change to a pink livery, following a new sponsorship deal with BWT.[59]

Ocon and Pérez finished the first five races of the season in the points, notably at the Spanish Grand Prix with Pérez finishing fourth and Ocon a career-best fifth. This run of points finished ended at the Monaco Grand Prix with both cars finishing outside the points. The two have been involved in a number of collisions in subsequent races. At the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, both drivers collided with each other with Pérez damaging his front left suspension and losing his front wing, before eventually retiring from the race. Ocon recovered from a puncture to finish sixth. At the Belgian Grand Prix, the two collided again whilst battling for position with Ocon damaging his front wing and Pérez getting a puncture. Ocon finished ninth but Pérez retired from the damage caused by the puncture late in the race.

The team secured fourth place in the Constructors' Championship for a second successive season at the Mexican Grand Prix. The points total at the end of this season was 187, the team's best points tally ever.

2018 season

Mazepin Force India VJM11 Testing Barcelona
Nikita Mazepin testing the last Force India car the Force India VJM11 during pre-season testing in Barcelona.

For the 2018 season the team retained the 2017 line up of Sergio Pérez and Esteban Ocon.[60] At the opening race in Australia, Sergio Pérez and Esteban Ocon finished 11th and 12th respectively.

The team was put into administration during the Hungarian Grand Prix. The legal action was instigated by a group of creditors, including Sergio Pérez, as a means of allowing the team to continue to operate while a new owner was sought. Pérez justified the action as a response to a winding-up petition filed by HMRC and supported by Formtech, a supplier, which would have resulted in an unmanaged insolvency of the company and almost certain collapse of the team.[61] A consortium led by Lawrence Stroll ended up acquiring the team's assets.[62]

Approaching the 2018 Belgian Grand Prix, the situation regarding the team's ability to compete remained unsure, as in order to buy the shares in the team, the consortium needed agreement with the creditors of the parent company - including 13 banks which held a freezing order over the assets of the parent. Agreement could not be reached in time, so the consortium was unable to buy the shares, and was limited to purchasing only the assets of the team. The team then had to participate in the F1 Championship under a new name, thus the adding of "Racing Point" to the team's name. The FIA excluded the former Force India entry from the championship "due to its inability to complete the season", and welcomed the new entity, Racing Point Force India F1 Team, that was allowed to race, but not to keep any points of the old team. This signaled the end of the constructor that had been founded for the 2008 season.[63]

Sponsorship and partners

Kingfisher, a brand owned by Vijay Mallya, was the primary sponsor. Other sponsors for 2008 included ICICI Bank, Medion, Kanyan Capital, Reebok and Reliance Industries Limited.[64] The above sponsors, except ICICI Bank and Kanyan Capital, continued to sponsor the team in 2009. New sponsors include AVG, Airbus and Whyte & Mackay.

In December 2009, Computational Research Laboratories (CRL), a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, and Force India Formula One Team announced an exclusive three-year multimillion-dollar partnership deal to offer a fully automated Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) solution to aid the design of the team's next generation race cars as well improve aerodynamic efficiency in the current racing models.[65] Force India F1 has tied up with Airbus and EADS for technological support, and has a technical partnership with McLaren.[66]

In October 2011, Indian company Sahara India Pariwar purchased 42.5% of the team's shares for $100 million.[3] Mallya retained 42.5%, and the remaining 15% belonged to the Mol family. The team was renamed Sahara Force India as a result.[67] The shares sold were newly issued; Mallya and Mol did not sell any of their existing shares.[68]

Aethra, a leading Brazilian auto parts manufacturer joined the team as an official partner in 2012.[69] Other sponsors include Kingfisher Airlines (former), Whyte and Mackay, United Breweries Group, Vladivar Vodka, AVG Technologies, Alpinestars, Reebok, Schroth Racing, Muc-Off, Hackett, Chatham-Marine, UPS Direct, STILL and STL.[70] Smirnoff announced a partnership with the team in May 2014. Univa announced a partnership with the team in June 2014.[71] Force India announced a partnership with the Japanese company NEC Corporation (Mexican Division) for the 2015 season. Force India supported Hilmer Motorsport in GP2 and GP3 in 2014. In 2015 Force India announced a partnership with Adaptavist.[72] Since 2011, Force India have also provided backing to teenager Jehan Daruvala following his win of the team's 'One in a Billion' competition.[73]

Hype Energy Drinks has been a Force India sponsor since the 2015 season, with their CEO, former Formula 1 driver Bertrand Gachot, having driven for predecessor team Jordan during the 1991 season.[74] Force India have featured Hype Energy branding on the rear wing and side pods of the car for races where alcohol advertising is prohibited.[75] Hype Energy also supply the drivers with personal drinks bottles for races.[76]

On 14 March 2017, Force India announced a new sponsorship with BWT AG, which saw the VJM10 gain a striking pink livery, leading to the 'Pink Panther' nickname used for the cars by fans, commentators and the team themselves on social media.[59][77][78] Another new sponsor for 2017 was whisky brand Johnnie Walker, with whom Force India struck a multi-year deal.

Racing record

Year Name Car Engine Tyres No. Drivers Points WCC
2008 India Force India Formula One Team VJM01 Ferrari 056 2.4 V8 B 20
21
Germany Adrian Sutil
Italy Giancarlo Fisichella
0 10th
2009 India Force India Formula One Team VJM02 Mercedes FO 108W 2.4 V8 B 20
21
21
Germany Adrian Sutil
Italy Giancarlo Fisichella
Italy Vitantonio Liuzzi
13 9th
2010 India Force India Formula One Team VJM03 Mercedes FO 108X 2.4 V8 B 14
15
Germany Adrian Sutil
Italy Vitantonio Liuzzi
68 7th
2011 India Force India Formula One Team VJM04 Mercedes FO 108Y 2.4 V8 P 14
15
Germany Adrian Sutil
United Kingdom Paul di Resta
69 6th
2012 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM05 Mercedes FO 108Z 2.4 V8 P 11
12
United Kingdom Paul di Resta
Germany Nico Hülkenberg
109 7th
2013 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM06 Mercedes FO 108F 2.4 V8 P 14
15
United Kingdom Paul di Resta
Germany Adrian Sutil
77 6th
2014 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM07 Mercedes PU106A Hybrid 1.6 V6t P 11
27
Mexico Sergio Pérez
Germany Nico Hülkenberg
155 6th
2015 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM08
VJM08B
Mercedes PU106B Hybrid 1.6 V6t P 11
27
Mexico Sergio Pérez
Germany Nico Hülkenberg
136 5th
2016 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM09 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid 1.6 V6t P 11
27
Mexico Sergio Pérez
Germany Nico Hülkenberg
173 4th
2017 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM10 Mercedes M08 EQ Power+ 1.6 V6t P 11
31
Mexico Sergio Pérez
France Esteban Ocon
187 4th
2018 India Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM11 Mercedes M09 EQ Power+ 1.6 V6t P 11
31
Mexico Sergio Pérez
France Esteban Ocon
0 (59) Ex.

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External links

2009 Belgian Grand Prix

The 2009 Belgian Grand Prix (formally the LXV ING Belgian Grand Prix) was a Formula One motor race held on 30 August 2009 at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps near the town of Spa, Belgium. It was the 12th race of the 2009 Formula One season. The race was contested over 44 laps, with an overall race distance of 308.2 km (191.5 mi). The race was won by 2007 world champion Kimi Räikkönen of Ferrari after starting from sixth on the grid. Giancarlo Fisichella of Force India came second after starting from the team's first and only pole position. Sebastian Vettel came third after starting from eighth on the grid.

It was Räikkönen's first Grand Prix victory since the 2008 Spanish Grand Prix and Ferrari's only victory of the season. Fisichella's second position gave Force India their first ever championship points and their first podium. This race also marks Fisichella's final podium and last points in Formula One, before he became a Ferrari test driver in 2010, as well as Räikkönen's 18th and last Grand Prix victory until the 2012 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and last for Ferrari until the 2018 United States Grand Prix. This was the last race for Luca Badoer.

2018 Formula One World Championship

The 2018 FIA Formula One World Championship was the motor racing championship for Formula One cars and the 69th running of the Formula One World Championship. Formula One is recognised by the governing body of international motorsport, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), as the highest class of competition for open-wheel racing cars. Drivers and teams competed in twenty-one Grands Prix for the World Drivers' and World Constructors' championship titles.

Lewis Hamilton won the World Drivers' Championship title, while his team, Mercedes, secured the World Constructors' Championship title. Hamilton clinched his fifth title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix, with the team securing its fifth consecutive title at the following race. Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel finished runner-up, 88 points behind Hamilton, with his teammate Kimi Räikkönen finishing third. In the Constructors' Championship, Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport finished 84 points ahead of Scuderia Ferrari, with Aston Martin Red Bull Racing third.In 2018, the championship saw the introduction of a new cockpit protection device, known as the "halo". The introduction of the halo was the first stage of a planned rollout that would see the device adopted in all FIA-sanctioned open wheel series by 2020.

Adrian Sutil

Adrian Sutil (German pronunciation: [ˈadɾjan zuˈtil]; born 11 January 1983) is a German racing driver, who has raced in Formula One for seven seasons from 2007-2011, then 2013-2014. He drove for the Spyker F1 Team, Force India F1 Team and the Sauber F1 Team. He was also the reserve driver for the Williams F1 Team in 2015.

Sutil started karting at the age of 14 and moved into single seater racing in 2002 in the Swiss Formula Ford series where he won the title. He moved up into Formula Masters Austria and started 1 race before stepping into Formula BMW ADAC in 2003. Sutil then raced in the Formula 3 Euroseries where he was the runner-up to Lewis Hamilton in 2005. He went to Japan in 2006 to race in the All-Japan Formula Three Championship and also finished 3rd in the Macau Grand Prix.

Having been involved in the Midland F1 test team, Sutil was promoted to a race seat for the new Spyker F1 team in 2007. Sutil continued to race with the team under their new guise Force India in 2008 where he remained until 2011. Having made his return to the sport in 2013 again with Force India, he competed in the 2014 season with the Sauber team.

Central Reserve Police Force (India)

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is India's largest Central Armed Police Force and also considered to be World's largest Paramilitary Force. It functions under the authority of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) of the Government of India. The CRPF's primary role lies in assisting the State/Union Territories in police operations to maintain law and order and counter insurgency. It came into existence as the Crown Representative's Police on 27 July 1939. After Indian Independence, it became the Central Reserve Police Force on enactment of the CRPF Act on 28 December 1949.

Besides law and order and counter-insurgency duties, the CRPF has played an increasingly large role in India's general elections. This is especially true for the states of Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar and in the North East, with the presence of unrest and often violent conflict. During the Parliamentary elections of September 1999, the CRPF played a major role in the security arrangements. Of late, CRPF contingents are also being deployed in UN missions.

With 239 battalions and various other establishments, the CRPF is considered India's largest paramilitary force and has a sanctioned strength of more than 300,000 personnel as of 2017.

Colin Kolles

Colin Kolles (born Călin Colesnic 13 December 1967 in Timişoara, Romania) is a Romanian-German former team principal and managing director of the Hispania Racing F1 Team, previously holding a similar position at the team known under the names Jordan, Midland, Spyker and Force India from 2005 to 2008. He was an advisor to Caterham F1 and had a part in the unsuccessful Forza Rossa Racing project.

Esteban Ocon

Esteban Ocon (born 17 September 1996) is a French racing driver who currently is a reserve driver in Formula One for Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport. He made his Formula One debut for Manor Racing in the 2016 Belgian Grand Prix, replacing Rio Haryanto. Ocon is part of the Mercedes-Benz driver development programme. He holds the all-time record for most consecutive finishes from start of career, with 27.

Force India VJM02

The Force India VJM02 was Force India's Formula One car for the 2009 Formula One season. It was revealed in a low-key press event, after the car's first test at the Silverstone Circuit, on February 28, 2009, before a public test at the Circuito de Jerez in Spain the following day. The Northamptonshire-based team's car is decorated in the colours of the Indian flag, and was driven by the same drivers as in 2008 – Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil.

Force India VJM03

The Force India VJM03 was a Formula One motor racing car designed and built by the Force India team for the 2010 season. It was driven by Adrian Sutil and Vitantonio Liuzzi and was unveiled online, on 9 February 2010. The car made its track début the following day at the second group test at Circuito de Jerez. In Bahrain, Sutil and Liuzzi qualified 10th and 12th respectively. Liuzzi finished ninth, scoring two points, while Sutil spun in an oil leak caused by Mark Webber in the Red Bull before finishing outside the points, in twelfth position.

Force India VJM04

The Force India VJM04 is a Formula One racing car developed by Force India for the 2011 Formula One season, the fourth car the team has made since entering the sport in 2008. The car was driven by long-time Force India driver Adrian Sutil and 2010 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters champion Paul di Resta. The car was launched online on 8 February 2011.

Force India VJM05

The Force India VJM05 is a Formula One racing car designed by Sahara Force India F1 Team for use in the 2012 Formula One season. The car was launched on 3 February at Silverstone. It was driven by Paul di Resta, and Nico Hülkenberg who returned to the sport after spending one year as Force India's test and reserve driver.

Giancarlo Fisichella

Giancarlo Fisichella (Italian pronunciation: [dʒaŋˈkarlo fiziˈkɛlla]; born 14 January 1973), also known as Fisico, Giano or Fisi, is an Italian professional racing driver. He has driven in Formula One for Minardi, Jordan, Benetton, Sauber, Renault, Force India and Ferrari. Since then he has driven for AF Corse in their Ferrari 458 GTE at various sportscar events, becoming twice a Le Mans 24 Hour class winner, and a GT class winner of the Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. He was also Ferrari's F1 reserve driver for 2010.

Fisichella won three races in his Formula One career, the first of which was at the chaotic 2003 Brazilian Grand Prix, a race abandoned for safety reasons with 15 laps remaining. After several days of confusion regarding rules and technicalities, Fisichella was eventually declared the winner in the following week, and collected his trophy in an unofficial ceremony at the following race. He was brought into the Renault team to replace fellow Italian Jarno Trulli, and won his first race with the team in Australia in 2005. However, after that race it was his teammate, the Spanish driver Fernando Alonso, that would win the greater share of races for Renault. Although highly rated as a driver, Fisichella was unable to keep pace with eventual champion Alonso, managing just one further race win following his debut. Outside of driving, he has backed his own GP2 team, FMS International.

On 17 June 2012 Fisichella won the GTE Pro division of the Le Mans 24hrs for AF Corse and followed this up with the Manufacturers' title in the WEC at the end of the season.

Nico Hülkenberg

Nicolas Hülkenberg (German pronunciation: [ˈniːko ˈhʏlkənbɛɐ̯k], born 19 August 1987) is a German professional racing driver currently racing for the Renault F1 Team. In 2015, he also contested two rounds of the 2015 FIA World Endurance Championship season for Porsche, winning the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans in his first attempt. He was the 2009 champion of the GP2 Series, and is a previous champion of both the Formula 3 Euro Series and A1 Grand Prix, as part of A1 Team Germany. He is one of 5 drivers since 2005 to win the Formula 2 (formerly GP2 series) championship in his debut season, the others being Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg, Charles Leclerc, and George Russell. As of February 2019, Hülkenberg holds the record for the most Formula One career starts without a podium finish, a record he broke when he failed to finish in his 129th race (the 2017 Singapore Grand Prix) and in so doing passed Adrian Sutil's previous record of 128.Hülkenberg raced in Formula One in 2010 with the Williams team. Despite winning the first pole position for Williams in more than five years, he was not retained for 2011 and joined Force India as a test and reserve driver. He was promoted to a race seat with the team for the 2012 season, joining Paul di Resta. In 2013 he drove for the Sauber team, with Mexican driver Esteban Gutiérrez as his teammate. Hülkenberg returned to Force India for the 2014 season. In October 2016, it was confirmed that he would switch to Renault for 2017.

Paul di Resta

Paul di Resta (born 16 April 1986) is a British racing driver from Scotland who drove in Formula One from 2011 to 2013, became a reserve driver for the Williams F1 team in 2016 driving a single race for them as a substitute driver in 2017. A former DTM and Formula 3 Euroseries champion, di Resta did not secure a Formula One drive for 2014, and rejoined Mercedes to race again in the DTM.

Racing Point F1 Team

Racing Point F1 Team competing as SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team is the team that Racing Point UK has entered into the 2019 Formula One World Championship, using the constructor name of "Racing Point". The team, based in Silverstone, United Kingdom, competes under a British licence.

The team was renamed in February 2019 from Racing Point Force India F1 Team, which used the constructor name of Racing Point Force India for the 2018 season. The 2019 season also saw the team branded as "SportPesa Racing Point F1 Team", acknowledging lead sponsor SportPesa, a sports betting company from Kenya. The team's car for the 2019 season, the Racing Point RP19, was announced in Toronto, Canada. The team's drivers for the 2019 season are Sergio Pérez and Lance Stroll, with the team making its racing debut at the 2019 Australian Grand Prix.

Racing Point Force India

Racing Point Force India Formula One Team was the team that Racing Point UK made a late entry into the 2018 Formula One World Championship with. The team used the constructor name "Force India", competed under a British licence and was based in Silverstone, United Kingdom.

The team was formed in August 2018 when investors purchased the assets of Sahara Force India F1 team, which was operating under administration. The consortium of investors included André Desmarais, Jonathan Dudman, John D. Idol, John McCaw Jr., Michael de Picciotto and Silas Chou named Racing Point UK Ltd. and were led by Lawrence Stroll, the father of then-Williams F1 driver Lance Stroll. The team made its competitive debut at the 2018 Belgian Grand Prix.

The team was renamed in February 2019 as Racing Point F1 Team.

Sergio Pérez

Sergio Pérez Mendoza (Spanish: [ˈseɾxjo ˈpeɾes] (listen); born 26 January 1990) also known as "Checo" Pérez, is a Mexican racing driver, currently driving in Formula One for Racing Point.

Pérez was a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy until 2012. He took his first Formula One podium at the 2012 Malaysian Grand Prix with Sauber, a drive which won him plaudits and fuelled speculation of a move to Ferrari in the near future. However, Pérez later told reporters that he expected to stay with Sauber until at least the end of the 2012 season. Due to his young age and performance, he has been referred to as "The Mexican Wunderkind".Pérez joined McLaren for the 2013 season, but the car failed to deliver the team a single podium finish. Subsequently, for the 2014 season, the team decided to replace Pérez with Danish driver Kevin Magnussen very late into the season almost leaving Pérez without a seat. In December 2013, it was announced that Force India had signed Pérez in a €15 million deal. He remained with Force India after they went into administration in the latter half of 2018, and then their reformation as Racing Point F1 in 2019.

Spyker F1

The Spyker F1 Team, known as the Etihad Aldar Spyker F1 Team for sponsorship reasons, was a Formula One team that competed in the 2007 Formula One World Championship, and was created by Spyker Cars after their buyout of the short-lived Midland F1 (formerly Jordan Grand Prix) team. The change to the Spyker name was accompanied by a switch in racing livery from the red and white previously used by Midland, to an orange and silver scheme—already seen on the Spyker Spyder GT2-R—orange being the national colour and the auto racing colour of the Netherlands. At the end of the 2007 season the team was sold and renamed Force India.

Spyker F8-VII

The Spyker F8-VII (subsequently known as the Force India VJM01) was a Formula One car, constructed by Spyker F1 that competed in the 2007 Formula One World Championship. A "B Specification" car named the Spyker F8-VIIB was launched at the Italian Grand Prix and used for the remainder of the 2007 season. The engine of Spyker F8-VII car was Ferrari 056 despite the team opted for 2006-spec engine due to cost reasons. For the 2008 World Championship, Force India used a slightly modified version of the F8-VIIB, called the Force India VJM01 named after team owners Vijay Mallya, Jan Mol and Michiel Mol. The VJM01 used 2007-spec Ferrari 056 engines instead of 2008-spec. The F8-VII was the only car constructed by Spyker F1 in their own right after their take-over from the struggling Midland F1 team part way through 2006.

Vitantonio Liuzzi

Vitantonio "Tonio" Liuzzi (born 6 August 1980) is an Italian professional racing driver who formerly raced in Formula One for the Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Force India and HRT teams. He has homes in Lugano, Switzerland and Pescara, Italy.

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