Palmer ready for Lotus Free Practice debut


Jolyon Palmer will make his first appearance for the Lotus F1 Team during an official Formula 1 session at this weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix.

The 2014 GP2 Series champion will have his first Free Practice session on Friday morning, his first time in the Lotus E23 Hybrid since running one of the test days during pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain in February.

The Briton is excited to be getting into the car this weekend and hopes he can have a clean session so to aid the team’s set-up of the car for the rest of the weekend.

“It will be my first time driving an F1 car on a Grand Prix weekend so I’m really excited and looking forward to Friday’s Free Practice One session,” said Palmer. “Hopefully I can get a clean run and see what I can do in my first drive in the car since the Barcelona test.

“The team as a whole are looking to get our first points of the year and hopefully this should be possible if we can shake off a bit of bad luck this weekend.”

Deputy Team Principal of the Lotus F1 Team, Federico Gastaldi, insists Palmer will play an important part of the team’s weekend when he takes to the track on Friday morning, and revealed it will be the first of a number of practice sessions the Briton will participate in during the season.

“Jolyon is a crucial part of the team for this season so it was important for us to see him in the car over the course of a Grand Prix early in the year,” said Gastaldi.

“For the first two races, it made sense for our race drivers to get as much time as possible in the car, but now we can start exercising some of Jolyon’s talents in the FP1 session and we’ll see him out in action quite a few times over the course of the year.”