Pastor Maldonado: “Spa should be strong for us”

Pastor Maldonado believes Spa-Francorchamps is one of the best circuits in the world, and is looking forward to racing there this weekend when Formula 1 returns from its summer break in Belgium.

The Lotus F1 Team driver heralds the history of the Belgian track, and feels he cannot compare the legendary Spa-Francorchamps to any other circuit in the world.

“It is an amazing circuit and for sure one of the best on the planet,” said Maldonado. “The sensations a driver experiences at corners like the Eau Rouge / Radillon combination, Pouhon and Blanchimont are not like you feel anywhere else in the world.

“It is unique in every way and to think you are competing on parts of the track that were used back in the first Grand Prix season in 1950 makes it very special indeed.”

Maldonado believes the Spa circuit highlights both the positive and negative characteristics of a Formula 1 car, with the Venezuelan driver acknowledging the need to compromise on set-up to get the best out of a lap.

“Every track has its own challenges,” admitted Maldonado. “For Spa, it’s a long lap and this can present some set-up challenges. You want low drag for the straights but decent downforce for the corners.

“This is the same at any track, but with the longer lap at Spa the different requirements are highlighted.”

Looking forward, Maldonado believes the weekends in both Belgium and Italy could suit the Lotus team, and hopes good results can be a catalyst to a positive end to the season.

“I think we have some tracks coming up which suit our car so that’s a good positive,” reflected Maldonado. “Certainly, Spa and Monza should be strong for us so good results there will be a great way to reboot our season before we head to all the flyaway races when anything is possible.”