Both Lotus drivers went through the first qualifying session but were unable to find sufficient speed from the E22
Romain Grosjean will start from fourteenth on the grid with Pastor Maldonado fifteenth after qualifying for tomorrow’s Monaco Grand Prix under blues skies on the streets of Monte Carlo. Both drivers went through the first qualifying session but were unable to find sufficient speed from the E22 in the twisty challenge of Monaco’s slow speed corners to make it into the top ten today.
Romain Grosjean (Q: P14, 1:18.196): “Unfortunately we were not fast enough. We were hoping that the warmer conditions might help a little bit today but it wasn’t to be. It was a difficult qualifying session despite the car balance being okay but I think that the car is struggling a bit in slow corners, which is something that we were concerned might be the case. We will have to work on this to make it better as the E22’s much better in the high speed areas. It is very difficult to predict what will happen in races here, but we will always fight to the end.”
Pastor Maldonado (Q: P15, 1:18.356): “After the positive test we had in Barcelona we were hoping for a better result today. However this track hasn’t suited us so far this weekend. We struggled to get sufficient temperature in the tyres which seem to be a very hard compound for Monaco. I also suffered a lot from the traffic which didn’t help with tyre temperature or getting a fast lap. It’s a long race tomorrow so we’ll try to be clean in the first couple of laps, try to have a good strategy and we will see what we can do and deliver as best we can.”
Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: “We struggled in the slow speed corners.”
How was qualifying for the team? Disappointing, we simply didn’t have the pace through the slow speed corners here. Unfortunately, there are rather a lot of low speed corners here which means we’ve struggled relative to our rivals and fourteen and fifteen on the grid is the result.
What can be done in the race? Sunday will be a long race and we will take any opportunity to make up places and finish the race in the best position possible. We face a tough task. Monaco is the most difficult circuit of the season to overtake on and the tyre allocation here is particularly durable so trying something creative with strategy won’t be an option unless a safety car plays into our hands. We'll be looking at all the permutations overnight to maximise every opportunity there is.
Lotus F1 Team