Mixed qualifying for the Lotus drivers

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Germany, Hockenheimringde

Qualifying at the German Grand Prix saw Lotus Racing confirm the progress the Anglo / Malaysian team has been making all season, Jarno Trulli finishing 18th, less than a second behind Buemi’s Toro Rosso and closer to the established teams than in any race in the 2010 World Championship.

Team mate Heikki Kovalainen was just behind in 19th after beating Glock’s Virgin into 20th place, keeping both Lotus Racing cars at the head of the new team pack and looking strong for tomorrow’s race.

Jarno Trulli (Chassis T127-04) FP3: 10 laps, best time 1.19.607, 19th / QUALIFYING: 18th, 12 laps, 1.17.583 -
“I’ve had a great weekend so far. I’ve had no troubles with the car and I’ve been able to work on getting the right balance, and being comfortable with how the car feels in all the sessions. You can see from the lap time today just how good it’s been, so I’m really happy, but obviously we always have work to do, and the satisfaction comes from putting in the work and seeing results like the lap today. Tomorrow it’s all about pushing the guys ahead and getting both cars home again, so that’s where the focus is now.”

Heikki Kovalainen (Chassis T127-01) FP3: 11 laps, best time 1.19.193, 18th / QUALIFYING: 19th, 11 laps, 1.18.300 –
“It’s been quite a difficult weekend for me so far - it seems to be a bit harder than normal and I’m not sure why. The balance was ok today but the grip levels felt poor and I wasn’t able to get the best out of the tyres on either run. It felt like I was getting more out of them on the third lap each time, so we need to analyse that and see what’s behind it. Despite this we’re still in a good position. Jarno did a great lap and I got ahead of Glock pretty comfortably, so there’s everything to fight for tomorrow.”

Mike Gascoyne, Chief Technical Officer: “Mixed feelings today. A very good job from Jarno who was pretty happy with the balance of his car, but disappointing for Heikki who lost 3/10ths in a straight line to Jarno and we’ll have to look at the reasons for that. Overall he hasn’t been happy with the balance all weekend and I think the team didn’t do a good enough job on his car before qualifying. However, on the positive side we finished the best of the new teams, and we’re looking to take this form into the race tomorrow with a strong double finish.”

Kamarudin Meranun, Deputy Team Principal: “It’s very exciting to see us finish 18th and 19th, and we’ll be going up another position on the grid due to Sutil’s penalty. I’m sorry for Heikki, but very happy for Jarno and I’m sure Heikki will put in a very strong performance tomorrow – we’re firmly ahead of the new teams and closer than ever to those ahead, so it’s a good day!”


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