Interview with Lotus's Pastor Maldonado

Interview with Lotus's Pastor Maldonado

13 March 2014 – Pastor Maldonado will make his race debut with the Lotus F1 team at this weekend's Australian Grand Prix. Here, the Venezuelan reflects on the move to the outfit, chats about the E22 – his new challenger – and talks about his hopes for the 2014 Formula 1 season opener...

Pastor, how’s the relationship evolving at your new home in Formula 1?
Everything feels good and it’s going in the right direction. Even though there are a lot of resources and people, it feels so close knit and efficient. I like the team and I already have a good relationship with everyone I am working with. Hopefully it will get better and better during the year. For sure we are in a difficult moment because we didn’t run enough with the car in pre-season testing, but you can feel that the team are fully focussed on working hard to solve problems quickly. I’m looking forward to attacking and being competitive as soon as possible and right through to the end of the season.

What do you think of Australia?
It’s a great country and Melbourne is a wonderful city. It’s just great. I always love races that are close to the city because you have more people coming and it really feels like you are involved and part of their life for the short time you are there. There are all the benefits of the city to appreciate and the fans really get behind the event. It’s maybe one of the best races of the year.

What are your thoughts after pre-season testing?
Obviously I would have like to have had more laps! These are very complicated cars and Formula 1 should be about pushing the boundaries and developing new technology so it is very exciting. Maybe we have lost a bit of the great noises from the engine, but still they are powerful cars and a challenge to drive. It’s certainly going to be a spectacle, just as we had last year or maybe even better. For sure we need to keep running and keep adapting ourselves to the new rules, which are extremely different but this is something that just needs time.

What about the E22 and its potential?
I think the potential of the E22 is huge. We just need to work harder than the other teams, even though time is against us. I think the car is good and it will only get better. We need to put everything together and try to get 100 percent from the team, car and me from a driving point of view. All is possible at the moment and we are very optimistic to progress and get back to the top.

What are the challenges of Albert Park?
To be honest I love the track. The main challenges are that the track surface changes a lot over the weekend, especially from free practice to qualifying. The drivers and engineers need to try to predict how the track is going to evolve, especially for qualifying as this is crucial for the final position on Sunday.

How difficult is it going into the first race with so much that is unknown?
It is exciting. It will be especially demanding for the team. I think all the drivers will have to work more closely with their teams than in previous years on every aspect inside and outside the car. We have been working a lot in the simulator, and even though it is just a simulation we learn a lot from this. Communication will be essential to have a good race - managing the fuel, the tyres, the settings on the steering wheel, the engine, power recovery, power delivery and so on. It will be very demanding to concentrate and focus on the many different aspects in the car, as well as the actual driving of these new generation Formula 1 cars.

What could be possible in Albert Park?
Everything is possible. Especially because there are so many variables this season, particularly in the early races. We just need to stay calm and keep focused. It is not an ideal situation for many of the teams, but we just need to work together to improve. I have a lot of confidence in everyone at Enstone and everyone from Renault Sport F1 involved with the power unit too. Everyone has solved problems in the past so helpfully we can have quick answers that solve the issues we face now. This will be very important in terms of our performance and showing our potential. I’m feeling optimistic for our new challenge in 2014.

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Friday 27 March 2015

  2. Márquez on top again in third practice 18:49

    Márquez on top again in third practice

    MotoGP World Champion Marc Márquez made it a clean sweep so far in Qatar as he topped the third practice session for the first…

    MotoGP
  3. 18:07

    Latest F1 photos: Friday at Sepang

    F1
  4. Armand steps up to FR3.5 with Pons 16:49

    Armand steps up to FR3.5 with Pons

    Philo Paz Armand will make his Formula Renault 3.5 debut at Pons Racing this year alongside the already confirmed Roberto…

    FR 3.5
  5. Palmer to make practice debut in China 15:58

    Palmer to make practice debut in China

    Reigning GP2 Champion Jolyon Palmer will make his Formula 1 weekend debut for Lotus at the next round of the championship in…

    F1
  6. Márquez quickest in second Qatar session 15:53

    Márquez quickest in second Qatar session

    MotoGP Champion Marc Márquez continued to set the pace during second practice for this weekend's first round of the year in…

    MotoGP
  7. Wilson joins Andretti for Indianapolis rounds 15:17

    Wilson joins Andretti for Indianapolis rounds

    Justin Wilson will race for Andretti Autosport at this year's Indianapolis 500 and at the preceding round of the championship on…

    Indy
  8. Fernley: Mid-season revival for Force India 13:30

    Fernley: Mid-season revival for Force India

    Force India Deputy Team Principal Robert Fernley says that it won't be until the middle of the 2015 campaign until the squad…

    F1
  9. Renault issues threat to quit Formula 1 12:05

    Renault issues threat to quit Formula 1

    Renault Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul says that the French company could pull out of Formula 1 - with Red Bull's Christian…

    F1
  10. Vettel not happy with Friday performance 11:54

    Vettel not happy with Friday performance

    Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel says he was not happy with his own performance during practice for this weekend's Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  11. Alonso upbeat about McLaren progress 11:10

    Alonso upbeat about McLaren progress

    Fernando Alonso says he is pleased with the progress McLaren has made as he returned to action during Friday practice for the…

    F1
  12. Stevens pleased to be within 107 percent 10:22

    Stevens pleased to be within 107 percent

    Manor Marussia driver Will Stevens says he was pleased to be within the 107 percent mark of the fastest time in both practice…

    F1
  13. Red Bull drivers note improvements 09:50

    Red Bull drivers note improvements

    Red Bull pair Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo expressed their optimism over improvements made to the RB11 following Friday's…

    F1
  14. Bottas confident over back injury 09:43

    Bottas confident over back injury

    Williams driver Valtteri Bottas says he is sure that he won't be bothered by the back pain which forced him out of the…

    F1
  15. Hamilton surprised by Ferrari practice pace 09:02

    Hamilton surprised by Ferrari practice pace

    Lewis Hamilton says he was surprised by the pace Ferrari displayed on the opening day of practice for the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  16. 07:39

    Malaysian Grand Prix: Full Practice 2 results

    F1
  17. Hamilton moves ahead in second practice 07:34

    Hamilton moves ahead in second practice

    Lewis Hamilton recovered from his morning technical woes to set the standard during second practice for the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  18. Williams given suspended fine over tyres 07:01

    Williams given suspended fine over tyres

    Williams has been given a suspended fine of €10,000 after a tyre breach in Malaysian Grand Prix practice. All drivers are…

    F1
  19. 05:54

    Follow second practice for the Malaysian GP!

    F1
  20. Marciello pleased with F1 practice debut 05:52

    Marciello pleased with F1 practice debut

    Sauber reserve driver Raffaele Marciello was in high spirits after making his Formula 1 practice debut at the Malaysian Grand…

    F1
  21. Hamilton's engine allocation unaffected 05:12

    Hamilton's engine allocation unaffected

    Mercedes has said that Lewis Hamilton's engine allocation will not be affected by the problem he suffered during first practice…

    F1
  22. Stoner to make racing return at Suzuka 8hr 04:50

    Stoner to make racing return at Suzuka 8hr

    Casey Stoner will come out of retirement to contest this year's Suzuka 8hr race with Honda. The two-time MotoGP World…

    MotoGP
  23. 03:45

    Malaysian Grand Prix: Full Practice 1 results

    F1
  24. Rosberg tops FP1 as Hamilton hits trouble 03:37

    Rosberg tops FP1 as Hamilton hits trouble

    Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg topped opening practice for the Malaysian Grand Prix, while team-mate and reigning World Champion…

    F1
  25. 01:51

    Follow first practice for the Malaysian GP!

    F1
  26. Sepang boss wants young Malaysian in F1 01:20

    Sepang boss wants young Malaysian in F1

    The boss of the Sepang circuit says that the future of the Malaysian Grand Prix would be boosted if a young driver from the…

    F1
  27. Video of the Day: Hamilton's Sepang preview 01:04

    Video of the Day: Hamilton's Sepang preview

    Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton previews this weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang.

    F1
  28. Thursday 26 March 2015

  29. Video: Dealing with the heat at Sepang 19:14

    Video: Dealing with the heat at Sepang

    Fred Fernando, of Ferrari medical partner Medex, talks about tackling the heat and humidity at Sepang.

    F1
  30. Márquez sets pace in opening Qatar session 17:55

    Márquez sets pace in opening Qatar session

    Reigning double World Champion Marc Márquez set the pace as the new MotoGP season began under the lights at Losail in…

    MotoGP
  31. Ex-tester Frijns joins Blancpain Series 14:37

    Ex-tester Frijns joins Blancpain Series

    Former Formula 1 test driver Robin Frijns has switched to endurance racing for 2015 after signing a deal to race for the WRT…

    Misc
  32. Amberg joins Lazarus for GP2 campaign 14:10

    Amberg joins Lazarus for GP2 campaign

    Zoël Amberg will make his GP2 Series debut next month after penning a deal to race for Lazarus. Amberg has spent the last…

    GP2
  33. Hamilton: Red Bull equalisation call 'funny' 13:55

    Hamilton: Red Bull equalisation call 'funny'

    Lewis Hamilton says Christian Horner's call for the FIA to rein in Mercedes is "funny", considering the success his Red Bull…

    F1
  34. IndyCar season preview: Five key questions 13:21

    IndyCar season preview: Five key questions

    When the green flag drops on the streets of St. Petersburg on Sunday, it will have been almost seven months since the last…

    Indy
  35. 12:31

    Latest F1 photos: Thursday at Sepang

    F1
  36. Manor Marussia fires up car at Sepang 12:28

    Manor Marussia fires up car at Sepang

    Manor Marussia has fired up its car for the first time ahead of this weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix. The outfit made the…

    F1
  37. Sepang circuit boss wants late-season slot 11:43

    Sepang circuit boss wants late-season slot

    Malaysian Grand Prix boss Razlan Razali is hopeful that Sepang will extend its stay on the Formula 1 calendar, and has set his…

    F1
  38. Kobayashi joins Toyota's WEC effort 10:46

    Kobayashi joins Toyota's WEC effort

    Former Formula 1 driver Kamui Kobayashi has joined Toyota's World Endurance Championship squad as its official test and reserve…

    LM
  39. Rosberg: Unfair to say we're further ahead 10:41

    Rosberg: Unfair to say we're further ahead

    Nico Rosberg says it is unfair to suggest that Mercedes has increased its advantage over the rest of the Formula 1 field this…

    F1
  40. Williams signs Sutil as reserve driver 10:03

    Williams signs Sutil as reserve driver

    Williams has announced Adrian Sutil as its official reserve driver for the 2015 campaign. The German, who lost his Sauber…

    F1
  41. Bottas makes car changes to aid back 09:14

    Bottas makes car changes to aid back

    Valtteri Bottas says he has changed the seat and pedal positions in his Williams in a bid to prevent a repeat of the back issue…

    F1
  42. Alonso says steering 'locked' for testing crash 08:19

    Alonso says steering 'locked' for testing crash

    McLaren-Honda driver Fernando Alonso has gone against the team's official explanation of his testing crash, revealing that he…

    F1
more news