Suzuka, Japan: Force India drivers Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg will start the Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix in 11th and 13th positions, respectively, at the Suzuka Circuit here Sunday.
Though Perez and Hulkenberg qualified in 12th and 14th spots Saturday, Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne dropped 10 places on the grid due to an engine change and will start in 20th position.
Mercedes' Nico Rosberg took pole from teammate Lewis Hamilton while Valtteri Bottas of Williams will start third.
“I’m feeling disappointed not to be higher up. My first run in Q2 was good but for my second attempt, when the track was improving, things didn’t work out. On my out lap I came across a lot of traffic in the final chicane so I had to slow down and lost temperature in the tyres and brakes," said Perez.
"So I arrived at Turn 1 on the next lap and didn’t have the grip. It’s a shame not to maximise our performance because we managed to improve the car before qualifying and I felt more was possible. I’m hoping for better things tomorrow.”
German Hulkenberg said: “Starting from P14 will be difficult and will make the race a bit more of a challenge. We lost a very good lap at the final chicane when I locked up and I have to kick myself for that.
"We would have been on target for Q3, which would probably have been the optimum result considering our performance throughout the weekend so far. Starting 14th complicates things but Suzuka is one of the trickiest circuits so there will be everything to play for. With the threat of rain, a lot can happen."