Thursday, August 20, 2015

1 Racing Mind 2015 Formula 1 Mid-season Report Card: Lotus F1 Team



Lotus F1 Team


Team Score: C+


Romain Grosjean: C

Pastor Maldonado: C-

In 2014, Lotus F1 Team finished in the points on only three occasions over the course of the entire season. For the first 10 races of the 2015 Formula 1 tour, the two cars of Lotus have grabbed positions in the points seven times.

Maintaining the same driver line-up of Frenchman Romain Grosjean and Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado, the credited reason for the team's increased appearance in the top-10 has been with a power unit change. Powered by Renault for 2014, Lotus has shifted to Mercedes-Benz powerplants for 2015. Performance gains were noticeable through grand prix qualifying while top-10 contending race speed and reliability has led to a more fruitful season.

Lotus F1 Team's driver pairing on two of the most checkered veterans in current Formula 1 competition. Romain Grosjean's early career was marked with some many incidents that the sanctioning body parked him for a race. Having a pole and win to his credit for the 2012 Spanish Grand Prix, Pastor Maldonado also has a reputation for making costly mistakes. Both drivers have been involved with high-profile on-track incidents that have added penalty points to their Super License (Both drivers have an active total of six points assessed to them with twelve points equating to a one-race ban). Whether trying to gain any advantage possible to outwit competitors or simply making mistakes, Grosjean and Maldonado can be an unpredictable duo.

The Lotus-Mercedes has been a fairly consistently quick car in qualifying. For the Canadian Grand Prix, Romain Grosjean qualified 5th while Pastor Maldonado started in sixth place. The effort resulted in the Lotus F1 Team's only double-point finish for 2015.

Ingredients for Second-Half of 2015: 

With 9 in-race retirements for 2015, the Lotus F1 Team has almost reached its 2014 total for DNFs. Insuring their vehicles can finish the remaining Formula 1 races with their quick but volatile drivers tamed could early lead to more top-10 race finishes for 2015.

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