sport

Di Resta ready to shine

Paul di Resta is relishing the prospect of becoming an unofficial 'team leader' for Force India next season.

With Nico Hulkenberg off to Sauber for 2013, described by Di Resta as "a surprise" given it "is not a step up", question marks remain as to who will be the Scotsman's team-mate.

With Di Resta coming to the end of his second year with Force India, and now an experienced figure in Formula One, he will be seen as the more senior driver within the team regardless of who is appointed.

Di Resta certainly feels he is now equipped to deal with such a role, saying: "I feel I've enough experience having been a part of this team long enough.

"The longer you spend with a team, the more it is structured around you, and I can see signs of that as we're already talking about the future and where we are at.

"It's nice to have that, but at the same time it's not something you're going to give up on, and I'm going to remain committed to delivering what I can, to putting the effort in.

"It's rewarding when you do something, and maybe more so now Nico is leaving because this is a strong midfield team and it's a fight every weekend to get what you can out of it.

"There is no race you can ever say is easy. It's hard work, but I've learned a lot over the last couple of years, how much you fight and what the reward is.

"When you achieve something, maybe it doesn't look too good on paper, but as an individual in a team like this that is punching above its weight, it's very satisfying."

Asked whether he would prefer a more-experienced team-mate or a rookie, Di Resta said: "It's not my decision, and it's not something I should be concerned about.

"At the end of the day I'm employed to do a job and deliver on track.

"Whatever their decision will be, will be.

"I feel we could deal with having a rookie in the team, equally we could deal with having someone competitive in the team.

"Either way it doesn't bother me, but as a team you want to be scoring points."