F1 »

Fernandes 'pinching himself' over Lotus F1 line-up

Lotus F1 boss Tony Fernandes admits he is 'pinching himself' after F1 newcomers secure services of two former race winners for debut season
Lotus F1 boss Tony Fernandes admits he can't believe that the F1 newcomers have managed to secure the services of two former race winners for its debut season.

The team has now confirmed that Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen will form its driver line-up for 2010, with the pair having been left looking for drives after leaving Toyota and McLaren respectively at the end of the 2009 campaign.

It gives the newcomers an experienced pairing with which to enter the sport and Fernandes admitted it had been a huge achievement to bring in the Italian and the Finn considering that the team doesn't yet even have a completed race car.

“I am still pinching myself,” he said. “We have not even finished our first race car, so to attract two race winning drivers to the team is a huge achievement and honour. I think it is a testament to our ambition and our long-term vision that we have such talent on our books in year one. It is further proof that we are serious about what we do and I am sure the other new teams are looking at us with some envy right now.

“We have three drivers who I believe complement each other excellently and who I think represent what Lotus F1 Racing and 1Malaysia is all about. That is not to say it was a straight-forward decision because we spoke with other drivers who I rate very highly, but ultimately we have opted for a careful mix of experience, youth and ambition.

“In Jarno we have the F1 veteran who proved in 2009 that he is as quick and determined as ever. In Heikki we have a continuing rising star who is still hungry to prove himself, and in Fairuz we have a Malaysian national driver who is eager to progress up the F1 ladder to fulfil the hopes of a nation. It's the full package if you ask me.”

Fernandes added that the experience brought to the team by both Trulli and Kovalainen would be invaluable in 2010 and said he was confident the pair would help the team make progress next year.

“2010 will be the first season for Lotus F1 Racing and we have a lot to achieve in a short space of time,” he said. “As with any new venture, it is a case of 'all hands on deck'. Everybody has a vital role to play but it is about bringing a new team together and gelling. The drivers each bring different experience to the team and I think the combination of their skills will help us quickly establish ourselves as the ones to watch in 2010 and beyond.”



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Tony Fernandes [Pic credit: Lotus F1]
23.08.2015 - In the aftermath of the trial between Lotus and Charles Pic, bailiff is here to put the trucks and the cars under seal.
23.08.2015 - In the aftermath of the trial between Lotus and Charles Pic, bailiff is here to put the trucks and the cars under seal.
23.08.2015 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06 race winner
23.08.2015 - Race, The Pirelli race tyres of Sebastian Vettel (GER) Ferrari are taken from the paddock for further investigation.
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, Celebration, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, 1st position Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06
23.08.2015 - Race, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
23.08.2015 - Race, 3rd position Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


JohnsonsEvilTwin

December 14, 2009 2:41 PM

Kovalainen didnt have a bad word to say about McLaren or Hamilton when he left. Lesser men would be shooting from the hip after the way Mclaren so publicly went with Lewis and left Heikki with less support than his team mate. Lewis was on average 0.7 secs PER LAP faster than Heikki during race day(f1technicalnet). If anyone thinks this is purely down to Lewis they are kidding themselves!



© 1999 - 2015 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.