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Lotus preview quotes – 2012 Spanish GP

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus
2011 Qualifying – n/a, 2011 Race – n/a

“I have tested here very many times. It’s a challenging circuit – great fun with a good car, but not that great with a not so good car. Usually a car going well in Barcelona goes well everywhere. We had a good car there for the second pre-season test even if the car wasn’t quite together for the first one. The car has improved and I feel more comfortable in it.

“I expect Lotus to be very competitive at Barcelona. It’s going to be very, very close between the top teams. This is the only circuit where the teams have already tested with the new cars, and the set-up is crucial as the track changes with the wind and temperature. All the teams have updates for the first European race, which makes it even more interesting and even tighter at the top.

“I have won here twice, and there’s nothing better than winning in any Grand Prix. Those two wins are my only podiums in the event.”

Romain Grosjean, Lotus
2011 Qualifying – n/a, 2011 Race – n/a

“In Barcelona it will be important to qualify well, and it will be much harder to overtake than Bahrain. Qualifying is an area where we can still improve a little bit ourselves, we have some ideas of how to improve, and hopefully we’ll get on to the front row. We have a good understanding of the E20 after the Mugello test and we hope to bring some new parts to Spain too. Tyre management will be the key for a good performance in the race. Let’s see what the temperatures are like. If it’s as hot as Bahrain, the E20 should work well…”

Eric Boullier, Lotus team principal
“The first race in Europe is always the start of a new adventure. In this respect, yes, we’re all looking forward to this challenge. It also makes the life of the team easier in terms of logistics: we’re not that far away from home any more. This said, Barcelona is a special track because we always test there in the winter so it will be interesting to see the gaps between the teams; it might be even tighter than what we have already seen.

“We’ve been able to look after our tyres quite well during the races so far but the Barcelona track is very abrasive, especially for the front left tyre. Maybe we’ll do a better job than our rivals in this area. The only question mark is our performance relative to the temperature. A pattern started to emerge over the first four races, where we seemed to be more and more competitive in hot conditions. We’ll see.”

James Allison, Lotus technical director
“We will bring the first tranche of gains from our Windshear programme in addition to some parts from our conventional wind tunnel development. There will be modifications to the front and rear drums, to the front wing and to the floor.”


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