Lotus was encouraged by the amount of running it managed to achieve in the Australian Grand Prix despite neither driver finishing the race.

Pastor Maldonado lined up on the back row of the grid while Romain Grosjean started from the pit lane after the team completed just 42 laps in total throughout practice and qualifying. However, Grosjean managed to get within 14 laps of the finish before retiring with an MGU-K issue and he admitted that was around three times the amount of running he'd been expecting.

"In a way, it was a pretty positive day," Grosjean said. "I expected to do around 15 to 20 laps in the race after all the issues we've had this weekend, and we managed 45! We've learnt a lot today and all the changes made to the car have been positive.

"We still have a long way to go, but at least I know more about tyre usage, all my engineers know where we need to improve with the chassis, and we've learnt a lot about aero balance and fuel consumption. Of course there's more to do with the energy management and recovery and some work yet with the braking. We've still got lots of work to do, but we're definitely heading in the right direction."

Team-mate Maldonado retired after just 29 laps with the same issue, but said the race mileage was an encouraging way to end the weekend.

"It was obviously very disappointing, but if you look at the positives we did more laps than in the pre-season which is quite encouraging as we have more data which is very important for making progress," Maldonado said. "We had a very negative free practice but we did plenty of laps during the race which is very positive for the team. I'm looking forward to the next race and we'll keep pushing."



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