Here are some updates on the Lotus F1 Team. The Malaysian-backed outfit will join the final two F1 test sessions before the 2010 season starts in Bahrain. The race car is set to be driven for the first time at Jerez, Spain in mid February.

“We are actually a week ahead of schedule. When we got the entry on September 12, our schedule said we would fire up on February 12 – and we are now scheduled to fire up on February 5. After that, we will be at the second Jerez test and then the final one at Barcelona. That will be the first time the world will see the car in action,” chief technical officer Mike Gascoyne told Autosport.

Speaking on the development progress, he said: “We started wind-tunnel testing in October so by the time we are at the first race, we have had five or six months of wind tunnel testing. We have made pretty rapid progress, and if we can maintain that then we will be in pretty good shape come Barcelona mid-season – and that is really where you have to target where you’ve got to be.

“Now it is about where are you mid-season, where are you end of season, and I want to end the season beating Force Indias and Toro Rossos and whoever is struggling – maybe Saubers. I want to be picking them off,” said a bullish Gascoyne.