British GP: Paul Di Resta disqualified from qualifying

Lewis Hamilton

Paul Di Resta has been disqualified from qualifying at the British Grand Prix after his car was found to be underweight.

The Scot's Force India was 1.5kg under the minimum weight limit after checks were completed and the matter was referred to stewards.

The penalty deprived the 27-year-old of a career-best fifth in qualifying.

Force India blamed a discrepancy in Di Resta's weight after qualifying - driver and car count together.

Governing body the FIA said Di Resta would move to the back of the grid, but he may well be forced to start from the pits.

If the team need to add ballast to the car to make up its weight, that would be a change of set-up, which is not allowed under F1's parc ferme regulations.

The team have decided not to appeal against the decision.

Di Resta weighed less than expected on the FIA scales after qualifying but team boss Bob Fernley said that when he was weighed again later he was back to his normal weight.

The weight of the car and driver combined must be at least 642kg to comply with the regulations.

Before the problem came to light, Di Resta said he was "shocked" he had been able to qualify so well.

He said he had driven the lap as well as he could have.

"That was it. There wasn't any more. It takes a lot of commitment and it's satisfying when you get it done."

Force India's Paul Di Resta

Despite the technical problem, it was the latest in a series of strong performances from Di Resta, who was beaten only by the Mercedes and Red Bulls.

However, Red Bull say he is not in the frame for the seat that will be made vacant next year alongside world champion Sebastian Vettel following Mark Webber's decision to leave Formula 1.

Asked if that was frustrating, he said: "There's nothing I can do. It is what it is. I'm only trying to do what I can do.

"I've built my reputation in Formula One. I want to be in a winning seat, but it's people's board's decisions.

"I've still got a lot of races with Force India this year, and when it's exciting like it is today, I'll keep concentrating on that and let other people do the work in the background."

There may also be an opportunity at Ferrari, where Felipe Massa has been struggling in recent races, and Di Resta said he would love to have the opportunity to drive for the Italian team, whose lead driver Fernando Alonso he out-qualified by five places at Silverstone.

"You would jump at it definitely," Di Resta said. "Obviously it is every boy's dream as they grow up to get in a Ferrari at some point in their life, and is a nice thing having the Italian blood.

"But I will concentrate on my job and let other people do their job. Where I am next year I don't know, but there are many points up for grabs. That is the important bit, keeping your reputation high."

British Grand Prix Grand Prix, day three

Sunday, 30 June:
Race: Coverage on BBC One 12:10 BST, BBC Red Button 12:00 BST & Radio 5 live from 13:00 BST; live text commentary on the BBC Sport website. F1 Forum 15:30 BST. TV highlights 19:00 BST, BBC Three

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