October 6th, 2012 (F1plus Team).- Everything looked very positive for Lotus, but not perfect during the qualifying session for the Japanese Grand Prix.
Romain Grosjean had an outstading qualifying session as his 5th position shows, but then Kimi Raikkonen's 8th left the feeling that it could have been more, since he spun while doing his "hot" lap.
“Not bad but we could have done better.” Said Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director for Lotus.
“We had the pace to get both cars further up the grid. Kimi spun off on a new set of tyres which hampered his progress and Romain didn’t have a great first sector on his qualifying lap so he could have maybe been a place higher, but overall, it’s been a reasonable weekend so far.” He added.
Lotus had in mind that the best they could achive was sixth, but the Frenchman managed to do better than that. More good news came when Button's 5-grid penalty took effect promoting Grosjean to 4th for tomorrow's start.
“Yesterday we had two tricky sessions, so to have both cars in Q3 is a good recovery. We knew it would be very tight in qualifying and I think we could maybe have been one place higher with a cleaner run through the first sector, but the leaders were too quick today.
We’re lacking a little bit of downforce at the moment, but with a few minor adjustments overnight and the right strategy I think we can take home a good haul of points tomorrow.” Grosjean Said.
The Finnish driver was also going strong, but maybe he was trying too hard and in the "spoon" turn he lost grip and spun enough to be sidetracked. Good news is that he was able to go back to the track but lost the opportunity to set his hot lap and also probably affected few drivers coming behind hin as yellow flags emerged.
“I spun. I was on a good lap and I was pushing - maybe a little too hard – and lost the rear. It’s a shame as the car feels the best it has all weekend. If the car’s good tomorrow we should be able to move forwards. Let’s see what happens.” Raikkoned commented.