Lotus test and reserve driver Jolyon Palmer got his first taste of the E23 Hybrid on Friday during day two of the Barcelona test and said he "loved being in the car".

Palmer, who won the GP2 Series last season, completed 77 laps in total, his best effort a 1 minute 26.280 seconds, which left him eighth overall on the leaderboard.

"It was very good," he told reporters, including Crash.net, at the end of the day. "I have not driven anything in anger for a long time, so it was nice. It was a tough start this morning with the weather being so cold. But anyway it was a good morning to get up to speed again really. The whole day, a few hiccups, but overall it was good to be back in a car.

"We got through pretty much what we wanted to. There were a few systems things that we didn't manage to do. But generally it was productive.

"We learnt quite a bit and for myself, I had only done 30 or so laps in a F1 car, so for me it was a lot of learning to do. That was good and also for the team, we definitely went through some things, and especially this morning, we had a lot of systems stuff and data to collect, so, all positive."

Asked if it felt different testing on Friday, as opposed to when he ran with Force India at the end of last season, he replied: "It did, but in a good way. This is it now for the year [rather than it being a one-off at the end of the season].

"I know the guys I have been working with well. I have worked with them in the simulator already. It is also towards a project with the car, to try and make it as competitive as possible. Everyone is really motivated to obviously do a good job and I am a part of that now to progress the car as well over testing."

So does he think the team has made a step forward?

"Everyone is really positive. In general I am sure the team has made a big step forward this year. It is always difficult to tell, but the numbers look good and myself personally in the car, I felt good, especially this afternoon," he continued.

"I managed to push on a bit more and do some long runs as well. On both counts, I think the team is feeling very positive about the year and I am happy with a good first test day.

"I loved being in the car and can't wait to get out again. I am not expecting to run again now before the season starts, but you never know...."



Loading Comments...