Search

Eric Boullier hoping for a ‘standard’ F1 weekend soon for Lotus

20:20 25 March 2012

Kimi Raikkonen leads his Lotus through the rain at Sepang. Photo: Andrew Ferraro

Kimi Raikkonen leads his Lotus through the rain at Sepang. Photo: Andrew Ferraro

LAT Photographic

Kimi Räikkönen came home fifth as Hethel-backed Lotus produced a decent showing in a rain-affected Malaysian Grand Prix.

The Finn, who had to swallow a five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change, made steady progress while also clocking the fastest lap of the day on what was a drying Sepang track.

“It was a bit difficult today,” said the 2007 world champion. “It was my first time on the wet weather Pirellis and I didn’t know how the intermediate or wet tyres would react – I had only completed one installation lap on them before.

“I just tried to stay on the road and push as much as I felt comfortable with. When I changed to the dry tyres it took a couple of laps to get heat into them, and my visor was pretty dirty so seeing the dry line was difficult. Once I found my way I could push much harder.

“It was difficult to have another mixed weather weekend. The conditions changed a lot today so it was always a case of adapting and looking for grip. Overall, we seemed to have a pretty strong package again this weekend, so I’m relatively happy. A fifth today was OK, but we’re always looking for better results.”

After a flying start, Lotus team-mate Romain Grosjean got too close to Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes in the poor visibility before eventually spinning off the track on lap four.

Following on from lasting just one lap in the season-opener at Melbourne after a tangle with Pastor Maldonado, the Frenchman is yet to really get his teeth into a grand prix since the GP2 champion’s return to the grid.

“It felt like a perfect start off the line; I got a good jump on the others and with the Kers I managed to weave through the cars in front without touching anybody,” said Grosjean.

“Coming out of the first two corners I was up to third, which was an amazing feeling. In turn four Mark (Webber) managed to carry a bit more speed through the corner and edged in front. Michael (Schumacher) tried to follow him through but there was not enough space so we touched and I spun.

“From there things became really tough. The visibility was so poor I couldn’t see anything in front of me. We made the decision to stay out on the intermediate tyres but the rain got heavier and there was far too much water. I had massive aquaplaning into turn five and unfortunately ended up going backwards into the gravel.”

Lotus sit fifth in the constructors’ championships, behind Sauber thanks to Sergio Perez’s monumental effort if Malaysia.

“Today’s result is a bit frustrating,” added Lotus team principal Eric Boullier. “While it’s good to have a car finish in the top five after starting from tenth in conditions which were very tricky, we can’t help thinking that we could have achieved more from this race.

“Obviously, it’s disappointing for Romain as it’s another DNF for him in the early laps of the race. He had never driven in the rain with these intermediate tyres so we have to take that into account. He had a very good start off the line, but the contact with Michael ruined his race.

“But we recovered well from our position and on the plus side, the car looked strong again. Kimi had a flawless race. He was very consistent in all conditions and his best lap shows what could have been without his grid penalty. I’m sure when we have a ‘standard’ weekend – without bad weather, penalty or interruption – we will do very well.”

Related articles

0 comments

Other North Norfolk sport

Yesterday, 21:49
Ex-Norwich City FC boss Nigel Worthington presents the winners Runton with the cup. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

The goals rained in during the climax of the Cromer Lifeboat Cup competition.

Yesterday, 09:40
England and British Lions rugby stars Ben and Tome Youngs open the newly completed extension to Holt Rugby Club. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

England rugby stars Ben and Tom Youngs officially opened new and improved sports facilities in Holt and Aylsham.

Yesterday, 08:00
Ryan Walsh, right, and James Tennyson in action at the Copper Box Arena. Picture: ADAM DAVY/PA

Twins Liam and Ryan Walsh have vowed to become outright owners of their Lonsdsale belts – to ensure they can give them to the man they call their guardian angel.

Yesterday, 06:30
Great Yarmouth Town toast their promotion.

Fakenham Town completed a great escape on the final day as their 1-0 win at Walsham-le-Willows saw the Ghosts climb out of the Premier Division relegation zone, writes Mark Armstrong.

Most Read

Yesterday, 21:49
Ex-Norwich City FC boss Nigel Worthington presents the winners Runton with the cup. 

Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

The goals rained in during the climax of the Cromer Lifeboat Cup competition.

Read more
Ryan Walsh
Sunday, May 1, 2016
Ryan Walsh celebrates victory over James Tennyson after their British featherweight title bout at the Copper Box Arena, London. Photo: Adam Davy/PA

Cromer twins Liam and Ryan Walsh retained their British titles at the Copper Box Arena on Saturday night.

Read more
Ryan Walsh
Yesterday, 12:46
Action from Norfolk against Lincolnshire, Unicorns Trophy cricket. Lincolnshire batsman Dan Freeman ducks under the ball from Norfolk bowler Adam Todd. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norfolk’s promising start to the new season continued yesterday when they made light of the absence of skipper Chris Brown to make it two wins out of two in the Unicorns Minor Counties Knockout Trophy.

Read more
France
Yesterday, 08:00
Ryan Walsh, right, and James Tennyson in action at the Copper Box Arena. Picture: ADAM DAVY/PA

Twins Liam and Ryan Walsh have vowed to become outright owners of their Lonsdsale belts – to ensure they can give them to the man they call their guardian angel.

Read more
Liam
Saturday, April 30, 2016
Liam, left, and Ryan Walsh ahead of their big bouts. Picture: SIMON FINLAY

It’s been a long time coming, but twins Liam and Ryan Walsh are back on the same bill – and making history, again. Head of sport CHRIS LAKEY spoke to them ahead of their British title defences tonight.

Read more
Liam Walsh

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 12°C

min temp: 4°C

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Norfolk News e-edition today E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up