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Posts tagged “Jarno Trulli

Team Lotus Launch Their 2011 Machine The T128

Team Lotus (the one who raced last year) have become the second team to officially pull the covers off their new 2011 car.

The green and yellow liveried machine will start be raced by Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen this season under the name of Team Lotus as the management’s row with Group Lotus, now affiliated with Renault, continues.

The new car retains the 50’s yellow and green livery that fans came to know and love last season.  New sponsors stand side by side with old ones, on the now Renault powered machine.

On the technical side, Mike Gascoyne has said that the T128 is far more exciting, intricate and advanced than last seasons T128.  There is much more thought and special design in the front wing roll hoop and on the side pods especially.  The rool hoop/air box design is very similar to the blade design used by Mercedes in 2010, although this had been outlawed by the FIA – Lotus have found a way around the regulations.

“I think that basically this car looks like a frontrunning car in every area,” Mike Gascoyne said. “We said very clearly that we want to start challenging the established teams and I think that’s very achievable.”

“With last year’s car and especially the first half of the season it was just an exercise in survival, whereas from the middle of last year it was about building the team up – that’s when we started working on this car

“I think the thing that was a challenge this year was that the 2010 car really was a one-off, because of the way it was done with the design team and the time we had.

“There’s been almost no carry-over of parts for the 2011 car, whereas normally you’d have a substantial carry-over and the chance to optimise last year’s parts.”

Elliot Dason-Barber, head of R&D added: “The area that intrigues me the most is the front suspension, and the rear as well actually.  We’ve tried to push the boundaries with a few things to make it a bit lighter and more efficient.”

The team’s aim this season then looks to be fighting at the front.

Veteran Jarno Trulli, who endured a torrid 2010 campaign with the team said this morning: “Sitting on the grid in Bahrain this year will feel very different – a different tension,”

“Last year we were just aiming to finish the race. This year we’ll be aiming to finish in the points. With the package we have, that should be achievable.”




Bruno Senna “Likely” To Replace Trulli At Lotus Next Season

Reports from Brazil are suggesting that Bruno Senna is “likely” to be replacing Italian driver Jarno Trulli at Lotus for next season.

Senna, who is the nephew of the late three time world champion Ayrton, has had a difficult rookie season in F1 racing with the Hispania team.  He has talent, but needs a car to show it in – and the Lotus would certainly give him the backing to do so.

According to Globo Esporte talks between Senna and Lotus are “advanced”.  He would be partnering former McLaren driver Heikki Kovalainen at the Malaysian backed team.

Jarno Trulli is a stalwart of the F1 paddock, having been in the sport since 1997.  He has raced for Minardi, Prost, Renault, Jordan, Toyota and most recently Lotus.

Hungarian GP 2010: Webber Wins As Strategy Pays Off

Mark Webber took victory in today’s Hungarian Grand Prix thanks to a good strategy and some fantastic laps following a safety car period which turned the race from sedate to absolute chaos.

Fernando Alonso came home in 2nd place, a good points haul for the Ferrari driver while pole position sitter Sebastian Vettel failed to convert his grid place into a race win.

Race Review

Hungarian Grand Prix are not known to be particularly exciting, and following the first few laps it looked like nothing would be different today.  Jaime Alguerusari was an early retirement thanks to a major engine failure, and to add insult to injury the young Spaniard dropped oil all over the circuit.

Sebastian Vettel provided majority of the early entertainment with some scorching laps, pulling away from Fernando Alonso who had the pick of the starts slotting himself ahead of Mark Webber despite being on the dirty side of the grid.

Another notable start was from Vitaly Petrov, the young Russian who managed to get ahead of Lewis Hamilton.  He slid off and threw that away though, but it was promising from him, we like his style.

On lap 13, a piece of Tonio Liuzzi’s front wing came off and a safety car was called out to retrieve it.  Vettel’s lead was gone and everyone dived into the pits.  Chaos ensued, with Robert Kubica being let out of his pit box straight into the path of Adrian Sutil.  They collided, Kubica would later be penalised with a 10 second stop/go.  While this was going on, Nico Rosberg’s Mercedes parted company with its rear right tyre which bounded down the pitlane at high speed, missing mechanics, hitting one and eventually being caught by a brave Sauber man.  Unbelieveable stuff.

Mark Webber chose not to pit, and with some help from Vettel backing the pack up the Australian pulled away, his soft compound Bridgestone’s lasting longer and longer.

Vettel was then given a penalty for not staying close enough to the safety car, exceeding 10 car lengths.  He had to serve a drive through penalty, something the young German was not happy about.  He flailed his arms around like a baby throwing its toys out of the pram – not very sportsman like.  Still, this meant he was now down to third and with easily the fastest car he set about chasing Fernando Alonso.

However despite catching him rather quickly, Vettel was unable to dispatch the Ferrari of Alonso and eventually finished 3rd.  Alonso’s team mate, Felipe Massa, finished 4th a good points haul for the Scuderia.

Right at the end of the race we had an exciting battle with old wounds being opened, between Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello.  The Brazilian fought to get passed Schumacher, his former team mate and arch nemesis and with a handful of laps to go he tried to squeeze down the inside of Michael.  Schumacher, in typical style, forced Rubens into a corner and gave him just enough room.  At about 200mph, Barrichello was milimeters away from hitting the pitwall, a manoeuvre that he called “Erratic” and “Ridiculous”.  However Schumacher defended the move, and has been handed a 10 place grid penalty for the next race.

Webber’s win puts him right back in it thanks to Lewis Hamilton’s break down.  It means that Alonso too is only a matter of points away from the top, as Red Bull and Ferrari slog it out at the top.  McLaren will certainly be hoping for a turn in their fortunes after the summer break.

Race Result

Pos Driver Team Time
1 M. Webber Red Bull Renault
2 F. Alonso Ferrari +17.821
3 S. Vettel Red Bull Renault +19.252
4 F. Massa Ferrari +27.474
5 V. Petrov Renault +1.13.100
6 N. Hulkenberg Williams Cosworth +1.16.700
7 P. De la Rosa Sauber Ferrari +1 lap
8 J. Button McLaren Mercedes +1 lap
9 K. Kobayashi Sauber Ferrari +1 lap
10 R. Barrichello Williams Cosworth +1 lap
11 M. Schumacher Mercedes +1 lap
12 S. Buemi Toro Rosso Ferrari +1 lap
13 V. Liuzzi Force India Mercedes +1 lap
14 H. Kovalainen Lotus Cosworth +3 laps
15 J. Trulli Lotus Cosworth +3 laps
16 T. Glock Virgin Cosworth +3 laps
17 B. Senna Hispania Cosworth +3 laps
18 L. di Grassi Virgin Cosworth +4 laps
19 S. Yamamoto Hispania Cosworth +4 laps


Driver Team Lap Reason
L. Hamilton McLaren Mercedes 25 Gearbox
R. Kubica Renault 25 Unknown
N. Rosberg Mercedes 17 Wheel Failure – Pitlane
A Sutil Force India Mercedes 17 Pitlane Incident
J. Alguersuari Toro Rosso Ferrari 2 Engine Failure

Penalties – Post Race

Team/Driver Penalty Reason
M. Schumacher 10 Place Grid – Next Race Dangerous Driving
Mercedes Benz $50,000 Fine Wheel falling off Rosberg’s Car
Renault $50,000 Fine Releasing Kubica into Sutil’s path causing accident in pit

Lotus On Verge Of Renault Engine Deal For 2011

Lotus are on the verge of signing a deal with Renault for the French manufacturer to provide the team with customer engines for the 2011 season, according to the BBC.

The team, which returned to F1 this season, is currently locked into a deal with Cosworth the popular British engine manufacturer.  While Mike Gascoyne says he wants to work with Cosworth, during the weekend at Silverstone both he and team boss Tony Fernandes were spotted having talks with Renault engine technicians.

Renault currently supply their own works team, and the successful Red Bull Racing team.  Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli, Lotus’ two current drivers who are confirmed to be racing for the team next year are former Renault drivers.

When asked about the situation, Gascoyne refused to comment, saying: “We have a contract with Cosworth and we’re discussing with them ways to work together in the future.”

Drivers Want To Have Split Qualifying In Monaco As Traffic Fears Grow

Drivers have expressed concerns about traffic ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, the blue ribband event on the Formula One calendar with the new teams taking the grid size to one which has not been seen in many years.

With traffic already proving a difficulty in qualifying sessions, blocking and changes in regulations have attempted to solve some of the issues.  However, Monaco, which is the shortest F1 track on the calendar, has many challenges and could just see traffic jams if something isn’t done to combat the issues.

Many drivers, including Bruno Senna and Jarno Trulli have expressed desire for a split qualifying which would see the front runners not partaking in Q1, as the quicker cars could be easily impeded by the slower machines.

“We have to discuss this with Charlie, how are we going to do it – especially with qualifying,” said Senna in the HRT motorhome in Barcelona on Thursday. “There are a few things we need to go through with Charlie tomorrow and perhaps in Monaco after first practice.

“The idea of splitting the field is not a bad one to be honest. If they take six or eight cars from the group of the fastest cars, or slowest cars, and the other guys go in a different qualifying, it will probably be a good idea for both people.

“We don’t want someone much faster than us coming to overtake us, and they don’t want to be every lap getting someone slower. Let’s see how the time schedules go. I suppose it would be possible.”

Jarno Trulli told Autosport Magazine “From my perspective I think it’s very hard – for me that I’m slow as well as for guys in front who are very quick,”

“I would think that somehow the FIA should think to split us. I don’t know how to approach it but I think 24 cars on track is going to be hard. It’s really going to be hard. We really have to manage it in a good way. I don’t know if it’s right or wrong but maybe they should consider it.”

He added: “Split it any way you want, it’s not up to me, but if the teams can agree, let’s agree. Because otherwise we’ll start complaining over that. So it’s better to sort it out before than making a big mess after.”

Traffic is always an issue at Monaco, having more cars just increases the problem

Gascoyne Really Proud Of Lotus Team

Mike Gascoyne, the technical chief at Lotus has said he is very proud of the new team following their first race in Bahrain yesterday.

The man who helped bring the Lotus name back to F1 said that his team had done exactly what it said it would, bring a near competitive car, with good drivers and that would be reliable.   Lotus were the only team who had both cars finish out of the new teams, indeed Hispania and Virgin had neither car finish.

While Jarno Trulli was suffering with technical issues, Heikki Kovalainen had no such problems and dived in to overtaking manouevres only being lapped once.

“As we said, it does what it says on the tin,” he told Autosport this morning.

“We said we would be a professional team, we would turn up, we would be ready and we would be reliable. Then we could work on the performance.

“I think actually in the race, the performance of our quickest lap was not too bad. A 2m02, while a lot of guys didn’t get below two minutes. Our pace wasn’t bad and we felt from all the running we had done actually that single lap was our problem, and we were better over longer runs. It was just good to get to the flag.”

Bahrain GP 2010: Vettel Takes Pole On Scintillating Saturday In Bahrain

Sebastian Vettel did just enough with an excellent flying lap in Bahrain to take pole position for tomorrow’s first Grand Prix of 2010.

The German racer started where he left off for Red Bull Racing after a quality session where Red Bull really showed their pace after a poor Friday practice.

“In winter testing no one really knew where he was. It was clear there were four teams were pretty strong, but close to each other.” Vettel said post qualifying,

“To be honest yesterday was a tough day for us, we had not as much running as we hoped for. Another long night, especially mechanics with not much sleep and a lot of long faces, but they were keen this morning to keep pushing.

“I knew we had a great car, but obviously first of all we had to get it together.”

Felipe Massa managed to grab 2nd ahead of Fernando Alonso who will have to settle for third despite having a greater pace over the first two sessions.  The Spaniard was satisfied with Ferrari’s pace.

“I am very happy obviously,” said Alonso. “At is the first race, there are many things to answer in the first race with a long winter with a big difference in fuel loads, in all the tests and yesterday in practice, you never know what the competitors are running.

“We were excited about the first qualifying of the season, so now to have both drivers in the top three means we have a very competitive car. We thought so, but you need to confirm and it has been great, a great day and I think it is some kind of nice feeling to realise that we are in the fight because you never know until qualifying.”

Lewis Hamilton managed 4th place after a poor first lap in Q3, but was significantly faster than Jenson Button his new team mate who had to settle for 8th, behind Rosberg, Webber and Michael Schumacher who didn’t make any big surprises on his race comeback with Mercedes Benz.

It was Kubica and Sutil who rounded out the top 10, the latter along with his team mate Tonio Liuzzi (12th) who made the big surprises with the Force India showing excellent pace – definitely one to watch for the season.

Rubens Barrichello in 11th will get to select his tyre compound andget a set of fresh rubber ahead of the race, giving him a potential advantage at the start of tomorrow’s GP over the top 10.  Team mate Nico Hulkenberg looked to have the measure over Rubens in practice but the old master beat the young German who will start in 13th tomorrw.

The Sauber’s didn’t continue their successful test pace, down in 13th and 16th respectively, jostling with the Toro Rosso’s.

The new teams didn’t make ground but had a fairly successful day considering that it was their first ever qualifying sessions.  Virgin took first blood over Lotus, but the green and yellow Cosworth powered machines looked to be more consistent than Virgin’s racers.  Hispania got both cars out, and despite only a handful of laps they look ok for tomorrow – Karun Chandhok finally getting behind the wheel of an F1 car competitively.

Pos  Driver         Team                   Q1        Q2        Q3       
 1.  Vettel         Red Bull-Renault       1:55.029  1:53.883  1:54.101  
 2.  Massa          Ferrari                1:55.313  1:54.331  1:54.242 
 3.  Alonso         Ferrari                1:54.612  1:54.172  1:54.608 
 4.  Hamilton       McLaren-Mercedes       1:55.341  1:54.707  1:55.217 
 5.  Rosberg        Mercedes               1:55.463  1:54.682  1:55.241 
 6.  Webber         Red Bull-Renault       1:55.298  1:54.318  1:55.284 
 7.  Schumacher     Mercedes               1:55.593  1:55.105  1:55.524 
 8.  Button         McLaren-Mercedes       1:55.715  1:55.168  1:55.672 
 9.  Kubica         Renault                1:55.511  1:54.963  1:55.885 
10.  Sutil          Force India-Mercedes   1:55.213  1:54.996  1:56.309 
11.  Barrichello    Williams-Cosworth      1:55.969  1:55.330 
12.  Liuzzi         Force India-Mercedes   1:55.628  1:55.653 
13.  Hulkenberg     Williams-Cosworth      1:56.375  1:55.857 
14.  de la Rosa     Sauber-Ferrari         1:56.428  1:56.237 
15.  Buemi          Toro Rosso-Ferrari     1:56.189  1:56.265 
16.  Kobayashi      Sauber-Ferrari         1:56.541  1:56.270 
17.  Petrov         Renault                1:56.167  1:56.619 
18.  Alguersuari    Toro Rosso-Ferrari     1:57.071
19.  Glock          Virgin-Cosworth        1:59.728
20.  Trulli         Lotus-Cosworth         1:59.852
21.  Kovalainen     Lotus-Cosworth         2:00.313
22.  di Grassi      Virgin-Cosworth        2:00.587
23.  Senna          HRT-Cosworth           2:03.240
24.  Chandhok       HRT-Cosworth           2:04.904

Seb Vet

Lotus Launch Their First New Car Since 1994 – The T127

Lotus Grand Prix Racing are back in Formula One after a 16 year absence.

The team, reformed by Malaysian business magnate Tony Fernandes, the owner of Air Asia, launched their car – the T127 – in a lavish ceremony in Central London just a couple of hours ago.

The new car is decked out in swathes of green and yellow which will be familiar to any followers of classic Grand Prix, back in the hey-day of drivers like Jim Clark.

Looking a little sponsorless, despite its beautiful livery money will not be an issue to the multi-millionaire Fernandes, who has a bet on that his team will be better than rival airline owner Richard Branson’s new Virgin team.

Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen will be racing the car, a great pairing with plenty of experience for the team – with Fairuz Fauzy, the rated rookie as test driver.

“Words cannot express how I feel today,” said Fernandes. “It is an amazing job to get an F1 licence, have five people in Hingham and turn up today with this car.

“I was thrilled when Clive [Chapman] said that this was just like te beginning of Lotus back in the early days.”

He added: “We know we have a huge burden on our shoulers, standing on the shoulders of giants – Clark, Moss, Hill, and Mansell. We know we have a tremendous journey in front of us, we are honoured and cherished to be a part of history – we will leave no stone unturned in our efforts and we will do our best to return Lotus to its glory days.”

Mike Gascoyne, the former Toyota technical director was bouyant on the new car.

“The launch of the car is a very proud moment for the design team and the whole team,” said Gascoyne. “This one is very special for me personally for two reasons – firstly the Lotus name coming back into F1 is something very special.

“I grew up in Norfolk and went to school five miles down the road from the original factory. I grew up in era when Lotus was winning races and championships, so the opportunity to work with this team is very special. But also it is the challenge of bringing a new team and a new car into F1 in such a short space of time.

“What this is about for me, and it is the first launch I have been to where the whole team is here, there is a fantastic buzz about this place, the whole team has given their heart and soul to this project. I want to thank Tony on behalf of the whole team to have the courage to back us and trust us.

“We have a fantastic driver line-up who have put faith in the whole design team. I am proud to be up here on stage as a representative of that team, they have done a fantastic job.”

Meanwhile Italian driver Jarno Trulli said the whole event was very emotional.

“It is a very emotional moment for me – it will be great to take Lotus back on track where Lotus belongs and I think we have a big challenge, but it is what we are aiming for. I am really fired up for it,” he said.

Bernie’s Shortcut Solution Not Liked By Drivers

Bernie Ecclestone’swants to put shortcuts in at F1 tracks.  Yes, you read that correctly.  The stalwart of F1 wants to put in shortcuts so that the drivers wouldn’t get stuck behind slower cars.  They could be used up to 5 times per race.

Now, in theory it seems possible but when you think about it, its just silly.  It would seriously degrade the sport, and some of the circuits just couldn’t have shortcuts.  Where would you put them at Monaco for example?!

Bernie was defiant yesterday evening with his ideas.

“You wouldn’t get stuck behind a slower car,” he explained. “It would be great for TV. I’ve tried to push the teams on this because I don’t think the efforts to increase overtaking are working, but they haven’t gone for it.”

Lotus driver Jarno Trulli scoffed at the plans, however he admitted that F1 did need livening up a bit

“I think Bernie sometimes has very clear ideas, but this [proposal] is just not possible in Formula One,” Trulli told Reuters.

“This is not a game, this is a sport.”

“We need to find a way to make this sport more interesting,” Trulli added. “To make it more spectacular we need to race wheel by wheel and cars have to be close to each other – those sorts of things. But we don’t have to really invent new things. [NASCAR] has been very clever and very good in making sure that it keeps the rules very consistent over the years by not changing them too much, otherwise people at home will get confused.”

Yes, the sport needs livening up but I don’t think shortcuts are the best idea!

Trulli and Kovalainen Confirmed At Lotus

Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen have been confirmed as the Lotus F1 Team’s drivers for the forthcoming 2010 season.

The pair, both refugees from their former teams will join up with the newly formed, Malaysian backed team.

Trulli comes from Toyota who have left Formula One for good, and Kovalainen comes from the end of his contract at McLaren where he was replaced by current World Champion Jenson Button after some largely unimpressive seasons.

Fairuz Fauzy, a Malaysian driver will be the teams third driver.

“Trulli will bring us a lot of experience to develop the team. Heikki is a young driver with a lot of experience so I think we have fantastic drivers, with Fairuz as well. It is a wonderful mix of experience, youth and passion.”

Jarno Trulli will work with Mike Gascoyne again at Lotus, the third different team the Italian has worked with the British technical chief.

“I have been impressed by the long-term vision of the team management and technical staff,” Trulli said in a statement. “Tony has set out very ambitious plans and I am ready to help the team achieve these high targets.

“I am also pleased to be back working alongside Mike Gascoyne, someone with whom I have enjoyed previous success at other teams. I get on very well with him and I respect his working style.”

Kovalainen admitted he was very happy with the progress of the new team.

“I recently visited our factory and was so impressed by seeing how far the team has come in such a short time since it was launched in September, and by how determined everyone is to meet Tony’s ambitious targets.

“I knew immediately it would be a fantastic opportunity to help them achieve their goals.”

Trulli and Kovalainen have been on opposing teams for the past few seasons