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Lotus sets the pace in testing for Melbourne Grand Prix

Lotus F1 Team topped the times on the first day of testing at Spain’s Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in preparation for next month’s Melbourne Grand Prix with Pastor Maldonado setting a fastest time of 1 min 25.011sec during the course of completing 69 laps at the track.

Lotus F1 Team Third and Reserve Driver Jolyon Palmer will get behind the wheel of the E23 Hybrid as he undertakes his first driving duties for the team tomorrow.

Pastor Maldonado:

“It is always good to see your name at the top of the timing monitors and my fastest lap was just in the course of our normal programme for the day. It feels good to drive the E23 in Barcelona. The car responded well to the changes we made and we were able to complete a good number of laps. The team has made strong progress since Jerez and we have a great starting point for the rest of the week. The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is a perfect track to assess a new car so we’re happy with progress today.”

Nick Chester, Technical Director:

“It’s been a positive day. We had a couple of software niggles in the morning then we were able to work through a solid programme of setup work during which we racked up a good number of laps. The car did have an extended lunch break whilst we changed the clutch, then we were able to complete further work in the afternoon. We’re happy that we’ve made good steps forward since Jerez and we’re working steadily through our evaluations whilst confirming directions for improvement.”

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