Q&A with new Lotus Deputy Team Principal

Q&A with new Lotus Deputy Team Principal

23 March 2014 – Newly-appointed Lotus Deputy Team Principal Federico Gastaldi looks back at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix and estimates where the E22 stands ahead of next weekend's visit to Malaysia.

It's been an interesting first week for you in your new role?

I think it would be right to say that the start of the season has been a tough wake up call for everyone. I knew that it was not going to be easy to start with, and I've been in Formula 1 long enough to understand what was coming. It was frustrating more than anything to see the team working so hard; everyone pulling all-nighters but without great results to show for it on track. Following the race on Sunday it felt like we'd completed our first real test as the two weeks in Bahrain were a very frustrating experience for everyone. The Melbourne race was the first time we managed to run some consistent laps with both cars, because the free practice sessions were so difficult. So, on that side it was very tough considering the amount of hard work that everyone put in to make things happen.

What does your experience bring to the team?

It's true I've been in F1 for many years, and in various different roles. I've been at Enstone since the Benetton days and there are many people from those times who are still with the team which shows it has a solid bedrock.

I feel very much part of the team and my goal is to deliver what I feel it deserves in terms of results on the track. That's my main objective here. I will still be involved with business development and searching for new partners and investors. My other main goal is to try to put together all the elements with regards to all the talented people in the team, and to ensure we can deliver. It's obviously not only up to us – Renault Sport F1 play a big part within this framework so it's all about working together to achieve the best results possible. I know this team is the best in the paddock, there is absolutely no doubt about that in my mind. We have some of the most committed and experienced personnel around and they all have a winning mentality.

What's your perception of Romain so far this year and how he's dealt with the difficult situation?

Romain has matured greatly in the past few years. His approach to the team is very positive; he understands that we're all making a big effort, just as he is making a big effort in the cockpit. Like all of us he's frustrated, obviously. However he's very hands-on and wants to understand what is needed from his side in order to move forward in the right direction. Australia was tough for him, with tricky free practice sessions, and a disastrous qualifying. The race was what it was, in essence a test, but ultimately he is very positive – he knows this is a good team who deliver great cars and win races.

How is Pastor settling in?

For Pastor it's all new, but his approach has been extremely positive. His work ethic is very serious and he's a hardworking professional. Obviously, like Romain, he felt frustrated. I think it's natural! Romain has been here longer, and Pastor paid attention to him and the way in which everything worked over the weekend. Pastor has been very constructive and thumbs up to him for delivering the maximum in what is a temporarily difficult situation.

Talk us through the plan for Malaysia – what's the realistic aim?

To keep learning. I would be dancing faster than the music if I said something different! We need to keep learning and if everything goes as we anticipate, in collaboration with Renault Sport F1, then we will be in a position to continue progressing for Bahrain and when the Championship comes back to Europe in May.

What would you say to all the doubters?

I'd say wait and see what we can really achieve with the E22. If you look at it logically, Renault Sport F1 are the reigning World Championship-winning engine partner, so how is it possible to go from there to nothing? They will deliver the right package to all of us which will enable Lotus F1 Team to be at the front once again. We're a smaller team – we're not Mercedes or Ferrari or McLaren, but we have enormous pure racing spirit.

This team has been around a long time and we have people here from the glory days, who have passed on the philosophy and ethos of the team's renowned spirit and passion. We are ready to fight!

Interview provided by the Lotus F1 Team press office

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Saturday 25 October 2014

  2. Marussia also set to miss United States GP 10:48

    Marussia also set to miss United States GP

    Marussia is set to join Caterham in missing next weekend's United States Grand Prix after Formula 1 supremo Bernie...

    F1
  3. Ricciardo: Austin best of the new circuits 10:21

    Ricciardo: Austin best of the new circuits

    Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo believes that the Circuit of the Americas, the venue for next weekend's United States Grand...

    F1
  4. 08:02

    Latest MotoGP photos: Saturday at Sepang

    MotoGP
  5. Márquez storms to 13th pole in Malaysia 07:59

    Márquez storms to 13th pole in Malaysia

    World Champion Marc Márquez set the fastest ever MotoGP lap of Sepang as he stormed to a record-breaking 13th pole position...

    MotoGP
  6. Video of the Day: Button on road safety 05:12

    Video of the Day: Button on road safety

    McLaren driver Jenson Button lists the components necessary to be safe on the road.

    F1
  7. Friday 24 October 2014

  8. Caterham F1 set to miss next two races 18:01

    Caterham F1 set to miss next two races

    Caterham looks set to skip the next two Formula 1 races after Bernie Ecclestone gave the squad special dispensation for the...

    F1
  9. 16:44

    Book F1 tickets and join the action live!

    F1
  10. Video: Behind the scenes at Force India 16:34

    Video: Behind the scenes at Force India

    Take a closer look at the inner workings of Force India's factory at Silverstone in this behind the scenes video, featuring...

    F1
  11. Grosjean 'very close' to new Lotus deal 15:57

    Grosjean 'very close' to new Lotus deal

    Lotus is just "a few details" away from signing a fresh agreement with Romain Grosjean, according to Deputy Team Principal...

    F1
  12. Caterham handed over to administrators 12:10

    Caterham handed over to administrators

    The Caterham Formula 1 team's management has decided to step back and hand over to administrators, in the wake of a public...

    F1
  13. Video: Mercedes duo in engineering race 09:41

    Video: Mercedes duo in engineering race

    Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg take part in a different kind of battle.

    F1
  14. 09:39

    Latest MotoGP photos: Friday at Sepang

    MotoGP
  15. Pedrosa tops first day at Sepang 09:38

    Pedrosa tops first day at Sepang

    Dani Pedrosa set the standard on the first day of practice for the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang. The Repsol Honda rider...

    MotoGP
  16. F3 champion Ocon completes Lotus test 07:28

    F3 champion Ocon completes Lotus test

    Formula 3 champion Esteban Ocon has completed his maiden Formula 1 test with Lotus after receiving two days of running in...

    F1
  17. Video of the Day: Pedrosa's Sepang highlight 05:03

    Video of the Day: Pedrosa's Sepang highlight

    Repsol Honda rider Dani Pedrosa picks his fondest Malaysian Grand Prix memory ahead of this year's event.

    MotoGP
  18. Nissany hails 'amazing' F1 test debut 04:16

    Nissany hails 'amazing' F1 test debut

    Roy Nissany described his first experience of Formula 1 machinery as "amazing" after enjoying a day of testing with the...

    F1
  19. Thursday 23 October 2014

  20. Caterham buyer refutes Fernandes claims 19:39

    Caterham buyer refutes Fernandes claims

    Caterham buyer Engavest "strongly refutes allegations" made by Tony Fernandes and Caterham Group CEO Graham Macdonald,...

    F1
  21. Fernandes blames Caterham F1 buyer 15:58

    Fernandes blames Caterham F1 buyer

    Tony Fernandes says the Caterham F1 team's buyer is fully responsible for the ongoing problems at Leafield, claiming that it...

    F1
  22. Ramon Aurin to be Pedrosa's new crew chief 15:00

    Ramon Aurin to be Pedrosa's new crew chief

    Ramon Aurin will replace Mike Leitner as Dani Pedrosa's Race Engineer next season. The Repsol Honda rider confirmed...

    MotoGP
  23. Buyer says Fernandes still owns Caterham F1 13:21

    Buyer says Fernandes still owns Caterham F1

    The consortium that purchased Caterham F1 at the end of June has insisted that Tony Fernandes did not transfer the relevant...

    F1
  24. Caterham F1 staff locked out of factory 11:54

    Caterham F1 staff locked out of factory

    Further doubt has been cast over Caterham's ability to contest the remainder of the 2014 Formula 1 season after staff...

    F1
  25. MotoGP reveals 25-bike entry list for 2015 10:55

    MotoGP reveals 25-bike entry list for 2015

    The International Motorcycling Federation (FIM) has published a provisional entry list for the 2015 MotoGP season, with the...

    MotoGP
  26. Fong completes first F1 test in Valencia 10:13

    Fong completes first F1 test in Valencia

    Adderly Fong completed his maiden Formula 1 test on Wednesday, getting behind the wheel of Sauber's two-year-old C31 in...

    F1
  27. Massa on Austin Fans' Forum line-up 09:43

    Massa on Austin Fans' Forum line-up

    Felipe Massa, Sergio Pérez and Esteban Gutiérrez have been confirmed on the line-up for the upcoming Austin Fans' F...

    F1
  28. Video of the Day: Racing without a driver 05:08

    Video of the Day: Racing without a driver

    A driverless Audi RS 7 was recently sent out to tackle the Hockenheim circuit. Find out how it fared.

    Misc
  29. Félix da Costa to make FE debut in Malaysia 04:47

    Félix da Costa to make FE debut in Malaysia

    Amlin Aguri has confirmed that António Félix da Costa will partner Katherine Legge for the second round of the Formula E s...

    Formula E
  30. Wednesday 22 October 2014

  31. Caterham F1 bosses threaten to quit 19:37

    Caterham F1 bosses threaten to quit

    Caterham's new bosses have warned that they could be forced to step away from the F1 team, claiming that Tony Fernandes...

    F1
  32. Haas: First five years revolve around survival 17:06

    Haas: First five years revolve around survival

    Gene Haas is under no illusions about the task his Formula 1 team faces when it joins the grid, stating that he will be...

    F1
  33. Background: The Toro Rosso candidates 15:57

    Background: The Toro Rosso candidates

    New Toro Rosso recruit Max Verstappen will become the youngest driver in F1 history when he takes to the grid aged 17 next...

    F1
  34. Video: Hamilton's Stars & Cars invitation 15:12

    Video: Hamilton's Stars & Cars invitation

    Mercedes-Benz will stage the once annual 'Stars & Cars' event at its Stuttgart museum on November 29. Lewis Hamilton, who...

    F1
  35. Sam Michael set to leave McLaren 13:15

    Sam Michael set to leave McLaren

    McLaren Sporting Director Sam Michael is to leave the team at the end of the season. A McLaren spokesperson has confirmed...

    F1
  36. Lotus expects to keep Grosjean for 2015 11:12

    Lotus expects to keep Grosjean for 2015

    Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez says he expects to retain Romain Grosjean for the 2015 season, despite admitting that the...

    F1
  37. 09:43

    Photos: Márquez, Pedrosa visit Indonesia

    MotoGP
  38. Pérez on brink of new Force India deal 09:34

    Pérez on brink of new Force India deal

    Sergio Pérez says he is likely to sign a fresh Force India deal "in the next week", a move that would complete the outfit's...

    F1
  39. Video of the Day: Wolff on F1 title success 05:15

    Video of the Day: Wolff on F1 title success

    Mercedes boss Toto Wolff discusses the brand's maiden Formula 1 Constructors' success.

    F1
  40. Tuesday 21 October 2014

  41. Silverstone senior executives suspended 13:55

    Silverstone senior executives suspended

    The British Racing Drivers' Club (BRDC) has taken "a closer role" in the day-to-day running of Silverstone following the...

    F1
  42. Caterham insists team not threatened 12:25

    Caterham insists team not threatened

    Caterham has dismissed media reports suggesting that Caterham Sports Limited (CSL) being placed into administration will...

    F1
  43. Lotus mourns death of Total chief 11:08

    Lotus mourns death of Total chief

    Lotus says it has been left "shocked" and "deeply saddened" by the death of Christophe de Margerie, Chairman and CEO of team...

    F1
  44. Spa to fight Nissan's use of Eau Rouge name 09:50

    Spa to fight Nissan's use of Eau Rouge name

    The Spa-Francorchamps circuit says it will contest an application from car manufacturer Nissan to trademark "Eau...

    F1
  45. Video: Miami welcomes Formula E 09:30

    Video: Miami welcomes Formula E

    Watch as the track layout for the Miami ePrix, scheduled to take place on March 14 next year, is revealed.

    Formula E
more news