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Lotus is adapting a realistic stance as the team moves into a new guise for 2012. Previously known as Toleman, Benetton and Renault, the Enstone factory is now running its 20th Formula 1 car as Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean make up an all-new driver line-up.
At the opening test of the year in Jerez last week, the returning 2007 World Champion topped the timesheets on Day 1, with the duo racking up a total of 404 laps and just under 1,800 kilometres (1,120 miles) over the four days. With much data collected, Track Operations Director Alan Permane is now looking to make a distinctive step up in performance at Barcelona next week.
“There’s a long list of improvements we’re looking to make,” he explains. “We had a few minor issues with radiator leaks and so on but nothing major and certainly nothing we won’t have fixed in time for Barcelona.
“Everyone seems to have a smile on their face. Having said that, we’re not going to try and run before we can walk. We’re very conscious that there’s a long way to go. The car is certainly reliable and well balanced, but it’s too early to say any more than that at this stage. It’s impossible to predict performance after just one test.”
Barcelona testing begins on Tuesday 21 February, running up to and including Friday.
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