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Barcelona F1 Test (1): Maldonado hails Lotus as ‘complete package’

Pastor Maldonado hails the performance and potential of the Lotus after turning in another fastest time on the third day of F1 testing in Spain.
Pastor Maldonado has expressed his pleasure with the early pace of his Lotus E23 after topping pre-season testing for the second time this week.

Having gone quickest on day one, Maldonado returned to the car on day three to stop the clock at 1min 24.348secs - the fastest lap of the test so far – putting himself and Lotus at the head of the timesheets once again.

Another hint that the Mercedes-powered Lotus has made a significant step forward over the winter, though Maldonado insists it is early days, he says the potential and reliability of the car excites him.

“It is looking quick and it is nice to drive,” he said. “Driveability is very good, it is very good to work with the engineers. I think it is step forward.

“We have been working so hard to achieve a good car and we have been working on the big problems we had last year, so there is a clear improvement. It is early days and we still need to work very hard, but we are learning a lot.

“Today was important for us to do a lot of mileage and put laps together to see the performance and the reliability of the car, the brakes, the temperatures and the general things. For the set-up and for the car there is still a lot to do. We are not at the top of the potential of the car [yet].”

Having notably struggled in terms of top speed in 2014 with the Renault-powered E22, Maldonado has been posting strong figures through the speed traps with this year's car. Indeed, though he says the Mercedes power unit is a factor in Lotus' impressive performance so far, he insists the car was designed to work well with the engine.

“We have been designing for a long time this car - to adapt the car to the engine. It is not a car and an engine, it is a complete package which is working together.”

“The car is quick, I don't how much it is against the others but it is quicker than last year. We were slow last year on the straights, but we have a good top speed [here].”

Related Pictures

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Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Lotus F1 Team  21.02.2015.
Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Lotus F1 E23 running with sensor equipment. 21.02.2015.
Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Lotus F1 E23. 21.02.2015.
Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Lotus F1 E23. 19.02.2015.
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