The Lotus F1 Team secured their second points finish of the season with Romain Grosjean finishing seventh in Bahrain, but team-mate Pastor Maldonado could only finish fifteenth after being compromised by a problem with his car during his anti-stall that saw him drop away out of contention when on course for his first points of 2015.
Grosjean was able to take his second consecutive seventh place in Bahrain, and was delighted that a tough weekend was rewarded with the points finish. He admitted he found it hard to manage the tyres on the abrasive Sakhir circuit, so was happy to have been able to make a two-stop strategy work.
“It had been a tough weekend until now for me, so it was really great to get another strong seventh position,” said Grosjean. “Today’s race was great, especially as there was lots of overtaking. I was really hoping to catch Daniel Ricciardo but he was too quick for us today.
“It was quite difficult to manage tyres, especially with the rears so I think we did a good job to make the two-stop strategy work. We only had new medium compound tyres for the race, the rest were scrubbed, so it really was a great job by the team.
“It was a good recovery from Friday and Saturday’s session and I’ll happily take seventh place as my birthday gift for myself and the team.”
Team-mate Maldonado was on course for his first points of the season but was once again hit by bad luck when his engine went into anti-stall mode during his final pit stop that meant the Venezuelan was ultimately classified a lap behind in fifteenth on the road.
“That was a frustrating race for me,” said Maldonado. “I pushed as hard as possible at the start on the medium tyres whilst everyone around me was on the grippier soft compound rubber.
“Once I moved to the soft tyres I was able to set the race’s then fastest lap so things looked good with our strategy.
“Unfortunately the engine anti-kill triggered when I came in to make my final pit stop which cost me a lot of time. It’s frustrating, as we should have finished strongly.
“My focus is now Barcelona where I’ve delivered very strongly in the past.”