Lotus dreaming of Canadian points finish

Mike Gascoyne is hoping a trouble-free weekend may allow Lotus to claim points in next weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix.

Montreal’s Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve poses one of the toughest challenges for drivers on the calendar, with the limited run off areas and a track layout which promotes excessive brake wear. Subsequently, previous Grands Prix have seen a number of retirements – pathing the way for the sport’s slower teams to take advantage and score points.

With this, Lotus’s Chief Technical Officer believes that the team must focus on maintaining reliability throughout the weekend and getting both cars to the finish.

“Canada’s a race we all look forward to. It’s a great city and a great race and we’re all glad to be going back to Montreal,” he said in the team’s Canadian Grand Prix preview.

“It’s a temporary circuit where you often see quite a few people hit the wall, bringing out the safety car more than it’s usually seen. 

“It’s one of those races where it’s possible to pick up points, and we’ve got to put ourselves in a position to do that. We’ve got two very experienced drivers in the car which will help us be there at the finish and that’s the primary goal. 

“It’s going to be hard on brakes, but we’ve had no problems in that area. 

“We’re also bringing a few more new parts, including a low downforce package specifically for Canada, so overall we want to build on the performances we’ve been putting in, aim for bullet-proof reliability, and have two cars see the flag.”

Although the Lotus T127 has proven to the be fastest of this season’s rookie teams, it has still suffered its fair share of reliability issues – the most recent seeing Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen retire with similar hydraulic issues in Turkey. Consequently, team principal Tony Fernandes is hoping that Canada will mark a turn the team’s fortunes around.

“We have to aim to get two cars home whenever we can and consistent reliability is the key to doing that,” he said.

“We have developed well in a number of important areas, but so far reliability is one where we need to work harder I hope Canada’s where we can turn that around.”

Jarno Trulli is also hoping for a strong performance next weekend after only finishing four of the twelve races he has entered in Canada. The Italian is also buoyed by the team’s performance in Turkey – where it made significant step towards the established midfield runners.

“Canada’s a funny one for me even though I love Canada  the track, the people and the city the race itself has never loved me!” he conceded.

“It’s a great challenge, and I’ve always performed pretty well there, but I’ve never had much luck there, so maybe that will change this year.

“Our car has been performing better and better over the last few races, so we’ll see what happens when we get out there, but I think we’ll continue to move away from the other new guys, and towards those ahead.”