Lotus GP scores win and points at Hungaroring

The Hungaroring was the venue for yet another win and fastest lap for the Lotus GP2 team, strengthening the teams overall lead at the top of the championship standings with just three rounds remaining. Hot and sunny conditions greeted the teams and drivers for the opening day of play on Friday, with James Calado finishing third overall on the hot tarmac while teammate Esteban Gutierrez a little further down the order in ninth as he focused on overall set up.

Esteban Gutierrez
Esteban Gutierrez

Photo by: xpb.cc

Qualifying meanwhile was held under changing weather conditions with the session starting on a damp track, however James Calado put in a superb lap to finish second, after holding pole for most of the session. However, a penalty for impeding another driver in practice meant that he actually started the first race from fourth. Esteban Gutierrez meanwhile finished the chaotic session in seventh.

Race one was held under warm and dry conditions and Gutierrez made a great start to take fourth; however after a battle with James Calado and a delayed pit stop, he crossed the line in eight overall, setting up pole position for race two. James Calado on the other hand fought hard to catch the top three and a podium finish, but was forced to settle for fourth overall.

Race two saw a dominating drive from Gutierrez, the Mexican driver leading from lights to flag, setting the fastest lap of the race along the way, to secure his third win of the 2012 season. James Calado also drove a strong race fighting his way through the field to finish sixth overall. Esteban is third in the drivers’ championship on 150 points while James is fourth, just eighteen points behind. Lotus GP continues to lead the team’s championship with 282 points, 24 ahead of their nearest rival with just two rounds remaining.

Esteban Gutierrez: The qualifying session was exciting because it started in the wet and I saved my tyres, waiting for the track to dry a little. The grip was not that great though and I ended up 7th. I had a good start in the first race and I was P4 but we delayed our pit stop and it didn’t pay off in the end. Starting from pole on Sunday, I had a good start and settled into P1. Once again, I tried to save my tyres and to control the race at the same time. I pushed hard when I needed to and I would lift off when I was not under pressure. The team asked me to do the fastest lap and I was happy to do so! The championship is not over, we have to keep this momentum for the next round in Belgium.

James Calado: I had a penalty after the free practice for impeding Nasr, but I still managed to have a good race. I had a good battle with Esteban in race one and was a bit disappointed not to get on the podium, but this track is very hard to overtake on. We have just six races left and I plan to do what I can to help the team secure the 2012 GP2 championship title.

Frederic Vasseur: The performance level of Lotus GP and its two drivers went just like team work, excellent. But a penalty is expensive and we must be exemplary in the last races of the season if Lotus GP wants to maintain its lead in the championship.

Source: Louts GP

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About this article
Series GP2
Article type Race reports
Tags budapest, calado, gutierrez, hungaroring, lotus

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