Romain Grosjean: “The new Pirelli limits hurt us”

The Lotus F1 Team put their off-track troubles behind them with a two-car top-eight finish during the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka, with Romain Grosjean finishing seventh and Pastor Maldonado eighth.

Grosjean made a good start to run sixth in the early stages, but admitted the pace was not there to keep the Sahara Force India of Nico Hulkenberg behind him, and feels the Pirelli limitations are affecting the team more than others.

“We finished with both cars in the points so I’m definitely happy with that,” said Grosjean. “When it came to my own race we were a little bit slow against the Force India. We tried to fight Nico Hulkenberg but couldn’t.

“I really struggled with the tyres at the end – it seems the new Pirelli limits hurt us more than our rivals so we’ll work around that for the next race. Overall though, we’ve had a good result as a team.”

Team-mate Maldonado felt the team deserved a good result after pushing hard all weekend, but was also disappointed not to have been able to keep Hulkenberg behind him after running ahead of him during the first stint.

“It was a good race for us and we really deserved a happy result today after pushing hard all weekend,” said Maldonado.

“It’s a shame we weren’t able to keep Hulkenberg behind us so we’ll review the strategy and performance to see if there was more we could have done.

“The team has been united all weekend, we scored some nice points and we’re looking forward to the rest of the season.”