Force India will be one of the big beneficiaries of the decision to ban exhaust-blown diffusers in Formula 1, reckons the team's technical chief Andrew Green.
Although the Silverstone-based squad finished sixth in last year's constructors' championship, Green felt it did not get properly on top of the exhaust-blowing technology so will lose far less from the ban than many rivals.
"We were a little bit late to the party and I don't think we extracted its full potential by a long way," said Green. "I think there are teams out there that extracted way more than we did and hopefully that will hurt them more than it's going to hurt us. We spent the winter trying to salvage back all that downforce that it cost us and we're getting closer."
He believes that the rule change will make F1 more competitive overall.
"My feeling is that it should close the field up," Green said. "I think you need to look at Silverstone, where the regs changed for a fraction of a second, and the grid did appear to close up."
While Green believes the blown diffuser ban will be key to Force India's form this year, he also has high hopes for the new aerodynamic direction that has been taken with the VJM05.
"The biggest change for us is the aerodynamic philosophy on the car, starting on the front and the new front wing, which sets up all the basic structures down the car, that's a big step for us," Green said. "It took us quite a long time getting ourselves out of the old philosophy. We did some testing last year trying to move away from it and then we used that knowledge over the winter to come up with the new concept at the front.
"It's a big departure from where we have been before, and the [wind]tunnel numbers are really, really encouraging so we're quite looking forward to getting on the track and seeing if it does produce what it should do."