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Formula1 chat

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Chinese GP - Lotus Racing Press Releases

Post  the83man on Sat Apr 17, 2010 11:45 am

Here are the recent press releases from Lotus Racing from Shanghai, courtesy of Tom Webb.


SHANGHAI GRAND Prix PREVIEW


Shanghai, China 14th April 2010

Spirits are high as Lotus Racing turns to China and the final race before the European season kicks off in Spain. The team is again focusing on reliability and the challenge of seeing both cars cross the finish line before its first major performance upgrade is unveiled in Barcelona.

Team Principal Tony Fernandes on seeing Lotus Racing on track for the first time in China: “I’m delighted we’ve arrived in China and can’t wait to see the fans’ reaction to us here. It’s an honour to be in Shanghai as China is the home of the new world and has been a very important market for AirAsia, so it’s somewhere I’m always excited about coming to. We are thrilled that we are bringing Lotus Racing, a uniquely Asian - British team, to the Shanghai Grand Prix, particularly as we have a number of people within the team with Chinese heritage who are very proud to see our team here for the first time. I know the whole team will work hard to put on a good show on and off track, and I hope that this demonstrates that we can provide a very good platform for universities, commercial partners and future drivers across China to work with a team whose heart beats close to our Asian home.”

Chief Technical Officer Mike Gascoyne’s thoughts turned to the challenges Shanghai will present, saying; “It’s just a couple of weeks since Malaysia and the last of the early season fly-away races so we’re focusing on getting both cars across the finish line here before we turn our attention to the upgrade package we have planned for Barcelona. The guys back at the factory have worked very hard on the parts we sent back, and have done a great job to turn around everything in time and get it sent back out here. Our car’s race pace has been good so far, and I think we’ll see that again in Shanghai – it’s a technical circuit that will bring out the best in both our drivers, and I think their experience will see us build on the solid start we’ve had so far.”

Heikki Kovalainen is a big fan of China, and is looking forward to the all aspects of the race: “I feel really good coming into the Chinese Grand Prix – I’ve had a few days of solid training and a bit of golf since leaving Malaysia and I love coming to China. We have some great fans out here - they wait at the hotel all night just to get an autograph and always give us really good presents to take home. Last year some girls took a taxi and followed us to the hotel with a Finnish flag hanging out the window all the way! The country has great food and a deep culture; every time I come here I see something new.

"The Shanghai track itself is a good challenge for the drivers. The two straights both provide overtaking opportunities and there are some nice high speed sections. The hospitality area has a fantastic atmosphere and it looks like nowhere else on the calendar, so all in all I’m very excited about being out here.”


Jarno Trulli agreed, saying; “China’s one of my favourite races on the calendar – I’ve not had the best luck at the track over the years, but I like it as it rewards a well balanced car and encourages you to push hard, particularly in the high speed corners. We’ve proved we have good reliability in the car so I’m looking forward to bringing it home and giving the Chinese fans something new to cheer for. The fans here are great – they’re very passionate and I’ve always had great support here, and now with Lotus Racing they have a British team with an Asian core to cheer for so I’m expecting even more support over the whole race weekend."



CHINESE GRAND PRIX FRIDAY PRACTICE


Shanghai, China 16th April 2010



Bright sunshine greeted Lotus Racing in Shanghai as Friday’s practice sessions went according to plan for the team, enjoying its debut in China. The track was very dirty and grip levels were low for the morning session, but improved throughout the day and, despite a small problem for Heikki with a couple of minutes left in the afternoon session, all programs were completed and both cars were again ahead of the other new teams at the close of FP2.

Chief Technical Officer Mike Gascoyne: “It was a satisfying day today and we achieved everything we wanted to on both cars, despite the fact grip levels were very low in the first session and both Jarno and Heikki were struggling slightly with rear grip. Jarno lost a front strake on his first run of the day and we replaced that quickly for his second run. Over lunch we changed the gear ratios on both cars and sent them out for the beginning of the afternoon session on hard tyres. Heikki pulled over after 30 laps as he had a low oil pressure warning and he stopped the car, but it’s not a problem and we’re looking forward to getting out again tomorrow.”

Jarno Trulli – FP1 22 laps, 1.41.531, 18th / FP2 35 laps, 1.39.624: “A trouble free day today which is good, and hopefully the whole weekend will go without any issues. I’m still struggling a bit with the setup, finding a balance that really lets me get the best out of the car, but we tested different tyres today and focused mainly on our setup for the race, so I’m reasonably happy. Grip levels improved throughout the day and our lap times showed that by the end of the day the circuit was really bedding in.”



Heikki Kovalainen – FP1 23 laps, 19th, 1.41.779 / FP2 30 laps, 19th, 1.39.947: “It was good today, apart from the small problem we had at the end of the day which was nothing major. The engine switched itself off because we had an oil pressure warning but we got through the whole program today and I think we’re in good shape for tomorrow and for the race.”




CHINESE GRAND PRIX QUALIFYING

Shanghai, China 17th April 2010

Lotus Racing Team Principal Tony Fernandes was one of the last people to make it out of Europe before most of the airspace was shut down, leaving Paris after being given the prestigious Officier of the Legion d’Honneur award in a ceremony on Wednesday, and arrived in China to see Jarno Trulli qualify 20th on 1.39.399 and Heikki Kovalainen 21st on 1.39.520 after a busy session at the Shanghai International Circuit.

Both Lotus Racing drivers were out early in the session and despite an early spin for Heikki, settled down well, staying best of the new teams until the dying seconds of the session. After a strong showing in all three practice sessions the team looks in good shape for tomorrow’s race and will be looking to put on a good show for the growing numbers of their local Chinese fans, and the fast expanding Lotus Racing army across Asia and around the world.

Jarno Trulli (T127-03): “It was a shame because I think I could have gone quicker, but the strong wind played a part and it wasn’t easy out there. It was a very gusty and I struggled a bit with that but having had three good practice sessions I’m expecting a better race tomorrow.”

Heikki Kovalainen (T127-01): “It was ok today but I couldn’t quite get the perfect lap. The first two sectors were ok but just before the back straight I couldn’t quite get the exit right and I think I lost about three tenths there. The wind has played its part today – in some braking zones at the back of the track there’s a tailwind which unbalances the car, but the second to last corner is into a headwind and it felt really good under braking into there but it’s no big deal – it’s just one of those things! The race tomorrow will be better for sure. The car has felt good all weekend on heavy fuel so let’s see what happens then.”

Mike Gascoyne, Chief Technical Officer: “It was the classic mixed bag today. We’ve been strong in practice and if it wasn’t for Heikki’s final sector we would have finished best of the new teams, but sometimes it doesn’t go according to plan. We were satisfied with the setups on both cars and while it’s been a bit disappointing I’m confident the work we put in throughout practice, on long runs with heavy fuel, will pay off for us tomorrow.”

Tony Fernandes, Team Principal: “First of all I’m just really pleased to be here in China! It was a very close shave - I think I was about an hour ahead of the airspace shut down and this is one of the races I’ve been really looking forward to coming to with the team. The spectacular growth of China over recent years is an inspiration to me and the whole Lotus Racing team - it shows how high we should be setting our sights and how we can reach the top by working hard to achieve your dreams. Seeing the fans’ banners for us in the stands makes me very proud, and shows that Lotus Racing has a real significance for Chinese motorsport fans, who know a good thing when they see it!”


All good stuff....

There is also an on-line Newsletter for you to look at here. It is very intimate and informative. Well worth a look.

http://lotusracing.uk.com/CJB-4D60-1H0329-2EBQG-1/c.aspx


Last edited by the83man on Sat Apr 17, 2010 11:47 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Add link to Newsletter.)
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Re: Formula1 chat

Post  GrumpyBodger on Sun Apr 18, 2010 12:14 pm

WOW, YES, YES, now they're really Racing.
What a great race today & what a result for McLaren for what was almost certainly going to be a Red Bull race.
Well done the Brits!
I found it fascinating to observe the various cornering techniques used on those very difficult Corners (OK Turns in Yuppy speek) & how those techniques were used to enable some great overtaking.
Yes overtaking in F1
A race of attrition for the Tyres; the Track Surface must be extremely abrasive.
What in my opinion was a truly great Race was only marred by the Pace Car having to be used, which did shake up the Bag a bit.
Schumacher once again provided a "Master Class" on how to "shut the Door(s)" but he got pretty "ragged" towards the end of the Race.
Maybe his age is now showing, keeping up with the "young Guns"
It was also great to see so many Spectators in comparison to last years Race; the lack of them was almost surreal.
Congratulations to the Cameramen, truly superb coverage.

Oh by the way I have an answer to my earlier question. I thought I'd share it with you due to of the massive lack of interest
Sauber has the Name BMW-Sauber-(Ferrari) even though BMW has no connection whatsoever this Year due to a deal struck with little Bernie.
BMW-Sauber won Points last season so using that name this year offered them all of the advantages of those 2009 Points, particularly the Cash share from those Points.

Cheers
John
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And now the Team's thoughts on race day.........

Post  the83man on Sun Apr 18, 2010 10:50 pm

The team have issued this press release following today's race which saw Heikki running as high as 6th at one point..... Well done to them all.


Lotus Racing's first four races came to an end in China with another solid performance as the head of the new teams and for the first time coming out in front of one of their established rivals. Heikki Kovalainen dealt with the tricky conditions superbly, making a bold call early on to stay out on dry tyres when most of the pack opted for wets, and finished the race in 14th place after a tight battle with Nico Hulkenberg's Williams. Jarno Trulli's race came to a premature end on lap 34 after his run of bad luck continued in Shanghai in a race dominated by the damp conditions.

Heikki Kovalainen (T127-01, car no. 19, fastest lap 1.47.141): "This was a great way to round off our first four races. I think we had the correct strategy today in what were pretty tricky conditions. The pace was good - we were again ahead of the other new teams, and this time had a good battle with Williams. The decision to stay out early on dry tyres was made by me and the team together - it wasn't wet enough to come in and as soon as the race started I could see the rain had calmed down so we agreed it was the right call to stick with the plan. The other cars on wet tyres were obviously struggling so that worked out very well. It might not always work out like this for us, but today it showed we're a good team who make the right decisions, so I'm really pleased, for everyone in Lotus Racing, and all our fans.

Jarno Trulli (T127-03, car no.19, fastest lap 1.49.675): "It was a tough day out there from the start, which is a shame because we'd had a trouble free weekend and I was able to push for quite a few laps. The conditions weren't too bad and I was enjoying myself , but I had more hydraulics issues which brought me in on lap 18. The team did a good job to get me back out again but unfortunately the problems struck again and I had to retire. We've got a bit of time now before Spain to work on the new upgrades, so let's see what happens when we reach Barcelona."

Mike Gascoyne, Chief Technical Officer: "Whilst I'm obviously pleased I want to say first how disappointed I am for Jarno. He's had a lot of bad luck so far - it seems all our bad luck has been on his car, so apologies to him, but it was a fantastic race from Heikki. We judged all the calls correctly and were on the right tyres all the way through, so congratulations to the whole team for that. I'm also very pleased to see our race pace was very good, especially at the end on the wet conditions. These first four races were always going to be tough, but we've achieved what we set out to and now we're looking ahead to Barcelona and seeing how the updates we've been working on help us move forward."

Tony Fernandes, Team Principal: "I'm really happy today as we've accomplished what we said we'd do. We wanted to see at least one car cross the line for the first four races, and we've done that, but it's kind of bitter sweet today. It's obviously a great result for Heikki but a real shame for Jarno as he seems to take the brunt of the issues - it's a bit odd as it does seem to be just his car. The conditions today made it very tense out there and it's very satisfying, and shows how we're progressing, that today we were racing Williams, who we beat on track."

"Another great thing for me was to see how the Lotus Racing dream is spreading, in China, Asia and across the world. We saw a load of Lotus Racing flags in the stands, and this time next year let's hope we see even more fans out there cheering for us - we'll do our best to give them something to be very proud of!"
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Re: Formula1 chat

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