Lotus has confirmed it's line-up for the upcoming Young Driver Test at Silverstone, with Kimi Raikkonen
set to spend a day on track to work on tyre development work.
The Finn will drive on the final day of the three-day session next Friday to help provide feedback to Pirelli on the changes that are then set to be introduced for the Hungarian Grand Prix
at the end of the month.
Before Raikkonen takes his turn on track, Lotus will run development driver Nicolas Prost on the opening day of the test, with third driver – and Crash.net
columnist – Davide Valsecchi then in action on day two.
Both Prost and Valsecchi drove in the Young Driver Test last year while Valsecchi drove the current E21 for half a day in Barcelona when Raikkonen was ill during pre-season testing.
“It's great timing for us to have this season's Young Driver Test scheduled in the middle of the year as it allows us to evaluate more of the new parts we have for the E21 as the championship battle intensifies,” team boss Eric Boullier said. “Remarkably, the UK has been having some notably good weather recently so we're looking forward to getting some good running across the three days.
“By running Nicolas and Davide we are giving them both invaluable experience and also gaining great feedback, as we've previously seen what they can do in the car and appreciate the valuable information they give us. It's also a fabulous second opportunity for all Formula 1 fans to come and see the teams in action at Silverstone.”
Trackside Operations Director Alan Permane revealed that the team has a busy programme in place for the test, with the aim being to gain the maximum track time possible from the three days of available running.
“This will be an interesting test and we have a lot planned across the three days,” he said. “Obviously we want to give all three drivers the maximum track time possible as well as assessing the latest upgrades to the car. Our aim on the third day will be to help Pirelli understand the latest changes to their tyres at the same venue where they most notably had issues this season.
“For Nico and Davide it's an opportunity to learn and improve, while for the team it is a great opportunity to try to refine some of the latest developments we have for the E21. Kimi is also allowed to run, enabling him and other race drivers to test tyres for Pirelli. This will benefit both him and Romain by granting us a better understanding of these tyres before we head to the next event in Hungary.”