Lotus Racing celebrated the announcement of their Renault engine partnership with two trouble-free practice sessions in Brazil today.
Jarno Trulli finished the day nineteenth, one place ahead of teammate Heikki Kovalainen, as Lotus topped the ‘new team’s time sheets’.
“That was a pretty good day,” said Trulli. “It's good to complete so many laps and have no problems at all. When the car feels well balanced, like it did today, you can push around the whole lap and end up where we did, ahead of the other new guys. I have to say this is one of my favourite tracks. It's very technical and I think it suits my style well. We've made a few changes to the setup for this weekend and that's given me more confidence in the car – I think you can see the results of that in my laptimes, and I think there's more to come tomorrow.”
Kovalainen is also a big fan of Interlagos, and is also optimistic for a good weekend here in Brazil. “It was a good day for us,” said the Finn. “It started well, with the confirmation of the Renault engines next year, and then on track we got through the whole programme with no problems. The car felt good on both types of tyres and with the different fuel loads and when you compare our times with our direct competitors I think we're looking very strong.
“I really like this circuit – it's been evolving all day and it's a good challenge to find the right setup to cope with the high speed and the low speed sections. When you have a good day like we have had today it's a very rewarding circuit to drive.”
Mike Gascoyne was also delighted with how the first day on track in Brazil had gone. “It was a very successful day for us, perhaps one of the best Fridays of the year,” said the Lotus Chief Technical Officer. “Both cars ran without any problems and the performance looks good on the short and the long runs. We ended up exactly where we wanted to be, and we are maybe looking slightly more competitive with the midfield than we have been. On the whole this was a very good Friday.”