Tonio Liuzzi believes discomfort with the 2010 Bridgestone tires has been part of the reason for his recent difficulties.
The Force India driver took points finishes in the first three grands prix of the year, but qualified in the midfield in both China – where he then crashed on the first lap – and Spain. Felipe Massa has pinpointed the current tires as part of the reason for his poor form relative to Ferrari teammate Fernando Alonso, and Liuzzi reckons he has the same issues.
"It's a pretty similar thing for me. But I started to have this from China," said Liuzzi. "A lot of it is about confidence. It's something that is between the whole package – the car, the setup, the surface and the temperature. There are a lot of different things, and some drivers are struggling more, some less.
"Personally we had an issue at the last race with the temperature so much colder and the tire grip. It was something that started in China but was only a little part. In Bahrain and Barcelona it was really big. We worked trying to understand what happened for me, there were two areas where we know we didn't do the right thing in Barcelona. But for sure the weakness of the tire when the grip is low is causing problems."
Liuzzi is optimistic that he will be in better shape in Monaco, due to both Bridgestone bringing softer tires, and Force India finding solutions for him.
"We believe we are in a better position for here because we understood a few things from Barcelona, and we just have to wait and see on Saturday," he said. "In qualifying, it's more difficult because there is less fuel and the car is much more nervous. Everything is amplified – especially when you've got really low temperatures and you're struggling to bring the tires up to temperature. For me it's been quite a significant thing in qualifying and less in the race. But we think we have been working around the problem and we believe we've found a little solution.
"My vision is always positive, because the car is good and we showed in the first three races we are strong. You don't forget how to drive after three races. We just need to understand what the overall problem has been, and clarify it for the next event."