Nurburgring: Sahara Force India drivers had a difficult day in office as Paul di Resta and Adrian Sutil settled for the 12th and 15th position respectively in the German Formula One Grand Prix qualifying here on Saturday.
Scotland`s Di Resta clocked 1:30.697, while German Sutil timed 1:31.010 as they were eliminated in Q2. In four races, it will be the first time that Sahara Force India will not start the race in the top 10.
The qualifying was dominated by Lewis Hamilton as he finished at the top for Mercedes after clocking 1:29.398, while Red Bulls` Sebastian Vettel (1:29.501) and Mark Webber (1:29.608) took the second and third position.
Last week, Sahara Force India had registered their best qualifying performance of the season with di Resta and Sutil setting the fifth and seventh fastest times at the British Grand Prix.
Di Resta, who clocked 1:31.322 in Q1, said: "It's been quite a difficult couple of days trying to get the car in the right operating window and I've never felt totally comfortable.
"All the changes we've made have been a compromise and I've really struggled with the balance. Ahead of qualifying we completely changed the set-up to try to improve things and it certainly helped.
"For Sunday, we just have to hope that we can repeat the race pace we've shown earlier in the season because that has been one of our strengths," he added.
Sutil, who was racing at home, was also left disappointed but said there were some technical issues with his DRS which affected his race.
"P15 for my home race is a bit disappointing. I had a technical issue with my DRS during Q2 and it was not working, which cost me about half a second per lap. That's why P15 was all that was possible today. Otherwise I think I would have been very close to making Q3.
"We can fix the issue for tomorrow so we will be ready for the race. Apart from that our absolute pace has not been at our usual level and we've struggled to deliver the performance we showed at Silverstone. Sunday is a new day; we will push on and I believe points are still possible."
Though disappointed Deputy Team Principal, Robert Fernley was optimistic of doing well in Sunday's race.
"It's difficult to determine if the change in tyre construction has hampered the team's performance, but for whatever reason we've not found the sweet spot this weekend and that is reflected in our qualifying performance this afternoon," Fernley said.
"The changes made to Paul's car ahead of qualifying were a step in the right direction and P12 was a good effort all things considered. Adrian has been happier with the balance, but was heavily compromised by a DRS issue, which made it impossible to reach Q3 on Saturday.
"It means we are further back on the grid than we'd like to be, but we remain optimistic that we can fight for points with both cars tomorrow," he said.