Lotus to push on with steering adjustements for Räikkönen
As of his first time back in an F1 car, Kimi Räikkönen has not been entirely happy with the steering set-up on the Lotus. The team however is pushing on with new variations of settings to make sure the the Finn will feel comfortable with the power assisted steering.
The team's technical director, James Allison confirmed there is an issue, but work is going on:
"We have a baseline steering set-up which Kimi is able to live with. It is not ideal for him, and it is our duty to ensure that we give him a system that meets his demands perfectly. We brought a new option to Melbourne for him to try but the wet weather meant that we were not able to judge whether it was a step forwards. We reverted to the “old faithful” out of an abundance of caution. We will keep persisting until we produce a set-up which is exactly to his requirements.
"Each driver is different in what he wants from his steering setup. All of the drivers have a hydraulically assisted powered steering unit in the steering rack as the loads on the wheel would be intolerable otherwise. The engineers adjust the level of assistance that this unit provides to suit the individual requirements of the driver. Kimi likes to drive with quite a light steering wheel, but one which also has great precision. Our baseline rack is precise, but it is not light enough for Kimi’s driving style. Our challenge is to produce a hydraulic rack that is more powerful than the current unit, but which sacrifices none of its precision. We have not got there yet, but we will do."
The story is somewhat similar to Jarno Trulli's problems during 2011, with the major difference that Lotus now seem to be short on the ball to resolve the issue.
Trulli however stated publicly in the beginning of 2011 that he would be unable to perform competitively. The Italian didn't get the necessary adjustements and was eventually replaced this year by Vitaly Petrov.