Pastor Maldonado says his first points finish of 2015 is like a 'monkey is off my back' and hopes to use it as a launch pad for the remainder of his season.

The Lotus driver enjoyed a trouble-free drive in Canada last time out to take seventh place and claim his first points of the season having failed to finish five of the first six races of the year. The Venezuelan feels he has proved how much potential he and the Lotus E23 has and says there will be plenty more chances to get his season up and running as Formula 1 returns to Europe.

"It's good and there's a lot of potential yet to come," Maldonado said. "There are twelve races left in the season so still a lot of opportunity to do well.

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"It's been frustrating waiting for a points finishing race to come, but now it's happened it's like the monkey is off my back and we can push forward for a good season. It was a positive weekend for the team in Canada and there's still lots of potential in the season ahead."

The former Grand Prix winner also says he is very grateful for the support his Lotus team has given him despite a frustrating start to the year and is delighted to start repaying them in Canada.

"There was a fantastic reaction from everyone in the team and it was great to be part of the team at that moment when I walked back to the garage seeing how everyone was happy for me," he explained. "Everyone has worked so hard this year and last year too, so it's really great when you finish a race in the points.

"This is what we want to do at every Grand Prix and what we want in Austria next."