Friday practice: Strong day for Lotus' Maldonado at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya

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The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya provided a delightfully warm backdrop for the opening practice sessions.

Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado completed a strong day of evaluation runs during the first day of the Spanish Grand Prix. The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya provided a delightfully warm backdrop for the opening practice sessions where Pastor ran in the top ten all day although Romain did not have as easy a time finding pace from his E22.

Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director - Technical programme notes

  • We evaluated a number of upgrades, principally aerodynamic with both cars running without issue in FP1.
  • Romain ended his last run of the afternoon early after reporting braking concerns.
  • Pastor’s gearbox reported some fluid loss at the end of his afternoon run.
  • Pirelli’s hard (orange) compound tyre was used in the morning, the hard and medium (white) in the afternoon.

What we learned today:

- The latest evolutions to the E22 appear to be beneficial. - We have a good basis for further progress tomorrow.

Romain Grosjean (FP1: P17, 1:29.944, 21 laps / FP2: P17, 1:29.493, 26 laps): “Today was frustrating as we had quite a few small problems which made it difficult for me to get clean runs and set a good time. This also made it difficult to get the set-up of the car where we want it to be. The positive is that we can see there’s pace in the car from Pastor’s laps. If we can get everything sorted and my car running like it should we could have a good result in qualifying tomorrow.”

Pastor Maldonado (FP1: P8, 1:28.744, 34 laps / FP2: P9, 1:27.866, 42 laps): “The car felt good today and it feels like we’re really making progress. We completed more set-up work and it was great to have a day without any issues. With the programme we were running I didn’t set my fastest laps when the track was quickest, so there’s more to come from the car as it is, as well as from further set-up improvements. It’s great to be running in superb weather conditions and with many Venezuelan fans in the crowd. I have a good feeling about this weekend.”

Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: “We had a good start to the day and were able to assess a lot of our new aerodynamic parts, including the floor and front wing, as well as engine mapping upgrades. Pastor was pretty happy with his car straight away, whilst we had a few niggles with Romain’s car which we’re working on rectifying for tomorrow. We’ve accumulated plenty of data which means a good chunk of work to be done overnight and hopefully more performance on track for qualifying tomorrow.”

Lotus F1 Team

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About this article
Series F1
Article type Practice report
Tags f1, lotus, pastor maldonado, romain grosjean, spanish gp

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