The Formula 1 circus has just wrapped its official test sessions at the Jerez circuit in Spain. On Lotus Racing’s first official outing reserve driver Fairuz Fauzy settled for 11th place with 1:31.848. The only driver who was slower than that time was Virgin Racing’s Timo Glock. The next day the steering wheel was handed over to Heikki Kovalainen. The Finn only managed to complete 30 laps before crashing out after exiting Turn 2 and 3.
No parts where available at the time so the team had to concentrate on other aspects of the car which did not require driving. Luckily for the team parts arrived in time for the team’s third official test day. Kovalainen managed 1:33.554 which put him in 12th, slowest of all. The former McLaren driver also revealed that the Lotus Cosworth T127 car is suffering from downforce issues.
“I think the main issue is the downforce. We have not been able to develop the aero package as we should have. We had five months to build the car and everything’s been a bit conservative. Before they started to design the car, they had no information about the engine, so cooling and everything is quite conservative,” said Kovalainen. He also added that the team should be able to rectify the issue.
On the final day of testing in Spain Jarno Trulli stepped in. The Italian clocked in a total of 141 laps, the most Lotus Racing has accomplished since it started the tests in Jerez. The lap time dropped to 1:23.470 but that was the slowest time of the day and it was almost five seconds behind the fastest time set by Jenson Button in his McLaren.
All Formula 1 teams (the ones that have launched their cars that is) are still in the testing phase and cars should be improved further. The teams will now head to the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona to continue testing on February 25th.