British rookie Paul di Resta says his Formula 1 debut was "definitely worth the wait" after a strong showing in his first grand prix for Force India.
The 24-year-old Scot outqualified his more experienced teammate Adrian Sutil, and then ran ahead of the German in the race before moving over twice to allow for varying strategies. Di Resta finished in 12th bu was elevated to 10th after the Sauber drivers were disqualified. The DTM champion declared himself satisfied with his performance over the weekend.
"It was quite productive for a first race," said di Resta. "I made a reasonable start and really had just had a reasonable battle with Kamui Kobayashi. But I didn't come off the best from that battle and I think our speed showed where we finished.
"Relatively looking at it, our performance was better than we expected this weekend. Coming into this we knew it was going to be hard for the first three grands prix until some new upgrades come in and a new philosophy from our design department."
Di Resta added that he made a few errors in his first race, but said that he intended to learn from his experiences moving forward to Malaysia.
"Physically I wasn't too bad, I would have said that I had more problems with the race simulation at Barcelona, but I think this one is well known for not being too hard," he said. "I think the concentration level, and everything that is going on in the cockpit, and when you can use the rear wing, the KERS and just managing it all.
"I did make a few mistakes, especially on in-laps with the procedures that you have to go through. It didn't look so much from the outside but I lost enough time to make a difference of me challenging other people.
"But it's new and so long as I don't make the same mistake twice, I can move on from that."
Asked what it would take to establish himself over Sutil, di Resta replied: "I think this weekend given that I missed the first free practice, it's been quite a big job to stay in front.
"I managed to qualify in front of Adrian and I was in front of him at the start of the race as well. I think my own performance is what needs to be worked on and certainly in qualifying, learning how the track improves and how it is at low fuel and stay in front of him.
"It's just about being on the top all the time and using your engineer to predict what the car is going to be like going into a qualifying session, what the track is going to be like and how it evolves."