SILVERSTONE // Eight of the 12 Formula One teams refer to Sunday's British Grand Prix as a home race, yet it is the marque with the most blatantly non-British name that can stake the biggest claim to be at home at Silverstone Circuit.
Force India are based so close to the Home of Motorsport they could pop home for lunch on a race weekend - were it not for the 10km tailbacks on the surrounding streets. The factory, located on the opposite side of the A413 side road, is a glass-fronted building with a grey, corrugated iron roof. Inside, is where the vehicles raced by Paul di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg are developed throughout the year by a team of mechanics and engineers - many of whom never get to attend the races.
"For us, the British Grand Prix is different in many respects," said Otmar Szafnauer, the team's chief operating officer. "Because Silverstone is so nearby, it gives us the opportunity to have employees who don't usually travel with the team to get close to the cars and see what it's all about, what we do and see other cars and teams up close."
As well as providing many employees access to the paddock, Szafnauer added Vijay Mallya's marque also traditionally hosts a party on the front lawn of the factory affording staff - many of whom rarely see each other such is the demanding travel schedules in Formula One - a chance to socialise.
"For our team, it is always a highlight of the season," Mallya said.
Of course, with last year's inclusion on the calendar of the Indian Grand Prix, Buddh International Circuit is also a home race for the team formerly known as Spyker. Unsurprisingly, the two races are incomparable. India with its subcontinental humidity; England with its submerged car parks.
India requires a long flight and expensive hotel options; England sees staff sleep at home and walk, cycle or drive to work.
"India and Silvesrtone are at two totally different ends of the spectrum," Szafnauer said. "Here we are close to the headquarters and enjoy the benefits that come with that, whereas in India we are close to our shareholders and so obviously enjoy that very much also.
It does work out a little bit cheaper because a lot of the team are based here so we save on travel and hotels and transporting people here."
And it is not only people that need transported. On Thursday, deputy team principal Bob Fernley called for new parts to be introduced to the car.
Usually, such a decision would require a chartered flight and take at least 12 hours as it is scrutinised by customs officials.
Here, they had the parts on the car by the afternoon. And it proved beneficial as Hulkenberg qualified in ninth on Saturday, while Di Resta was two places back in 11th.
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