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Lotus is sure that modifying its working pattern will help to launch a stinging title assault over the remaining nine races of 2012. Unlike in previous years, the team has developed its car for next season earlier than usual, thus allowing more time to keep pushing with its current E20 until the campaign-ending race in Brazil.
11 races into the current season, Lotus – Constructors’ Champions of 1995, 2005 and 2006 under either Benetton or Renault branding – sits third and a single point behind second-placed McLaren. For drivers’ honours, Romain Grosjean is eighth whereas Kimi Räikkönen is fifth and only 48 points off the lead with 225 still up for grabs.
“I think one of the things that our team has got a little bit wrong in the last couple of seasons is that we have been too ready to switch over to the new car a little bit too soon,” admits team Technical Director James Allison. “So we started this year intending to develop this one a bit longer than normal. What we decided to do was push a little bit harder with next year’s car in the first half of the season, so we have already ploughed effort into next year’s car than we have done in previous seasons.
"We have paid the price for that already. We have already made that investment and any impact that had on our development programme has already been accounted for in what we have achieved so far this year.”
Allison stresses that the change in working patterns will not have a negative effect:
“We haven’t put anything less into next year. We have just changed it around a bit. Given the development we have done so far this year - and that we have been able to keep pace with the others during a period when we’ve been putting a bit more emphasis on next year - it gives me a good feeling about the second half of the season.”
The team, originally known as Toleman, has won a total of four Drivers’ Championships to date – with Michael Schumacher (1994-5) and Fernando Alonso (2005-6).
The full video interview with James Allison can be seen on GPUpdate TV
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