Lotus Break Spirit Of Formula 1 Regs As New E22 Flops At Jerez – Can You Confirm That Please…
Mixed reports are emerging from the past weekend’s Lotus ‘promotional event’ at Jerez – which broke the spirit of the 2014 Formula 1 regulations – with the Enstone outfit claiming all went well and according to plan. However, an eye witness claims that little went on, and what did happen on track was not at racing speed.
Despite ignoring a request for comment from GP247 with regards to feedback from the ‘event’, a Lotus spokesperson released information to select media claiming: “Both the chassis and the new Renault Power Unit ran without any major problems.”
This statement is in itself a breach of the spirit of the 2014 Formula 1 sporting regulations which state: “A PE (Promotional Event) shall be defined as an event in which a competitor participates purely for marketing or promotional purposes.”
The Lotus spokesperson added: “Pastor [Maldonado] settled in very quickly and is already fitting into the team nicely. The car went together well and the design and build quality is another step up on the successful E21 of 2013.”
“We are looking forward to a full testing programme in Bahrain next week where we will start to see the potential of the new package.”
However a source, who works at Jerez and was present at the two day event, revealed that on the first day [Friday] the E22 “hardly ran at all and only emerged from the pit garage late in the day.”
On Saturday the E22 “did do around 20 laps” with either Maldonado or Romain Grosjean in the cockpit. But according to the source the E22 was “not running at testing or racing speeds [and was] actually very slow at times” on the second day, and “runs were limited to a few lap” stints at a time.
Furthermore the source claims they saw no evidence of cameras or TV crews normally present at such promotional events.
Lotus ran their new E22 car “without any major problems” for the maximum 100km (62 miles) at Jerez on Saturday.
That is a huge step forward from the first pre-season test at the same track, which Lotus did not attend, when the Renault power unit did not run cleanly in any car.
New Lotus signing Pastor Maldonado was behind the wheel of the car. Trackside operations director Alan Permane said: “We finished our running before 4pm on Saturday, due to the mileage restrictionsimposed on a promotional event.
“Both the chassis and the new Renault power unit ran without any major problems. Pastor settled in very quickly and is already fitting into the team nicely.
One would think if there was even a kernel of truth to the account that Lotus’s shakedown did not go as planned Andrew Benson would have at the very least mentioned it, or at least in the context that if it did happen, it could not been verified as of yet. Then again how could even a rag such as Grand Prix 247 (with I use often if for only a quick overview of the days events, they can’t all be fabricated can they?) put this up with out some kind of facts to support it?