Force India is confident that its downturn in Singapore will prove to be a one-off and that it will be in more competitive shape at Suzuka this weekend.
After fighting for podiums and victories in Belgium and Italy, Vijay Mallya's squad tumbled back to its former position at the tail of the field in Singapore – with Adrian Sutil and Tonio Liuzzi both failing to get beyond Q1.
Mallya admitted that Force India was currently uncompetitive in high-downforce trim, but expects all the remaining circuits to suit it better.
"We knew that after the results of Spa and Monza we had set a high expectation for ourselves, but we were realistic that we would find it more difficult at Singapore," he said. "I was nevertheless a little disappointed that we struggled quite as much as we did and we didn't get into Q2 as expected. That said, we do understand the reasons why – Singapore is an exceptionally high-downforce track and we have found this configuration difficult.
"Singapore is however the only type of track in the second half of the season like this so we had to make a decision to focus on the events where we could be competitive rather than putting resources towards just one event.
"Suzuka is more low downforce and should suit the car well. Plus both drivers know and enjoy the circuit so their confidence will be high. Tonio is now fully up to speed and has completed perhaps the most physical event of the year in Singapore. Adrian too has driven the circuit extensively so I would say we are feeling positive."
Liuzzi agreed with Mallya's suggestion that his lack of recent mileage had been particularly costly in Singapore, where he qualified and finished last having impressed greatly on his comeback in Italy.
"Singapore was a circuit where it's difficult to get the feeling back, because the concentration is so high, and you have to try and stay away from the walls," he said. "It's not a normal situation. But doing the whole race helped me a lot. I think we are getting close to my optimum speed."
Mallya does not think Force India can expect to emulate its Spa and Monza form, but is hoping to score at least.
"I'd hope to see another Q2 and then let's see about points in the race," he said. "That's got to be our goal going forward for the rest of the season now."
Sutil added that Force India's Singapore struggle was down to a poor qualifying set-up more than any major deficiency with the car.
"We knew Singapore would be difficult but we struggled a little more than we expected as we just couldn't find a set-up that worked well enough with the tires," he said. "We didn't qualify as well as we wanted to and that really just compromised the race."