Mixed fortunes for Lotus ART at Valencia
A win for Gutierrez, disappointment for Bianchi
After a month-long break, Lotus ART tackled the fourth meeting of the GP2 Main Series season with the goal of turning its innate competitiveness into good raw results.
The win by Esteban Gutierrez, his first in the series, comes at just the right time. The young Mexican driver took perfect advantage of his potential and his car’s potential to bring home a few points in the first race, before putting it into high gear in the second race.
Jules Bianchi was involved in a collision in the start of the first race which compromised his weekend. Penalized by the race stewards, the French driver started the second race in 24th position. He then moved up to 7th place, once again demonstrating that he is one of the fastest drivers in the series.
“I had a fairly good start and I overtook Ericsson from the outside, but I was not aware that he was so close to me when I resumed my normal line and my rear wheel has hit his front wheel. Unfortunately, this collision sealed my fate for the weekend, and despite an extremely competitive car, I did not manage to secure any points on Sunday.”
“The first race was a real challenge because I blocked the front end, which caused an imbalance and a massive vibration and I could barely see the track after that. From then on, I just wanted to bring the car home and secure my first point. That was a relief. On Sunday, I had a very good start and especially a very good re-start which allowed me to get past the leader. I was under a lot of pressure but I’m grateful to the team because they improved the car a lot and I definitely had a winning car today. I tried to stay focused and consistent. I managed to open up a gap. I knew there would be a win at the end of the road and it is great motivation for me as well as for the team. The first races were quite tough but that’s part of the learning curve. We now have to keep our cool and keep up the good work. I’m sure there is more to come from me and the team.”
“As usual, since the first race of the season, our performance level was excellent. Esteban had two perfect races, especially on Sunday when he was able to pick up the pace when he had to, and save his tyres when he had to do that. Jules was very fast and his comeback from 24th position to 7th will certainly be one of the highlights of the season.”
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