MOTORSPORT: Lotus chief says they'll get better

Romain Grosjean (right) leads Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari in Sunday’s Malyasian Grand Prix and is hoping to be in the points in this weekend’s Bahrain event

Romain Grosjean (right) leads Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari in Sunday’s Malyasian Grand Prix and is hoping to be in the points in this weekend’s Bahrain event

First published in Sport

Lotus deputy team principal Federico Gastaldi is determined that the Enstone-based team will be competitive despite their poor start to the new season.

So far, neither Romain Grosjean or teammate Pastor Maldonado have gleaned a point, with the Venezuelan failing to finish.

But in Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix, Grosjean was just out of the points as he finished 11th despite a problem with his car.

The race was won by Merc-edes’ Lewis Hamilton, with Grosjean, from the Enstone-based team, finishing just outside of the points.

And Gastaldi believes the team will get it right on the track.

“Romain drove a great race to be in with a shout of points and the team’s first finish of 2014,” he said. “That he was able to defend his position for the last eight laps despite his rear diffuser not working properly shows his determination.

“This determination is shared by the entire team as we now look to extract more performance from the E22.

“Pastor was very unfortunate with an issue which could have damaged his engine.

“We needed to retire him so that we can ensure better performance later in the year.

“We head to Bahrain as determined as ever to find more improvements in performance and reliability.”

Grosjean was pleased with his performance.

“Eleventh place is good for all the guys at Enstone and at the track, and it’s good for me too,” he said.

“Finishing the race was our first objective and then we wanted to see where we were with our car.

“It’s not perfect yet and ithout that issue, I’m sure we could have finished higher.”

Grosjean added: “It’s good to be back and close to the points, so it’s a positive for us.

“It was a good battle at the end.

“I kept remembering our past battles to make sure Kimi Raikkonen couldn’t go thro-ugh.”

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