Pastor Maldonado will join Lotus and team up with Romain Grosjean for the 2014 F1 season, it has been announced.
Maldonado has been linked to the Enstone-based outfit, along with the highly rated Nico Hulkenberg, for some time. However, the Venezuelan has now got the nod and will take over the seat vacated by the Ferrari-bound Kimi Raikkonen.
“It is a fantastic opportunity for me to join Lotus F1 Team for 2014. It's no secret that I have wanted a change of scene to help push on with my F1 career and Lotus F1 Team offered the very best opportunity for me to be competitive next season,” said Maldonado.
“The regulations and cars will change significantly so it is a very good time for a fresh start. I can't wait to be racing in black and gold.”
Maldonado has competed with Williams for the last three seasons, and while he won in Spain in 2012, this season has been far tougher and he even blamed his struggles in qualifying in the USA recently on sabotage
within in the Williams camp.
Despite that though, he has now landed the most competitive seat left on the grid, and many will suggest that is all to do with the financial backing he can provide from PDVSA.
Lotus' financial problems off-track are well known and the investment deal with Quantum Motorsport has still to be concluded. Quantum chairman Mansoor Ijaz told reporters in Abu Dhabi that it 'had been completed'
from his side and ahead of the Brazilian GP last weekend, Lotus team principal, Eric Boullier also reiterated that everything was still progressing.
If that is the case now is unknown.