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Found 5 results

  1. Lotus HVM Racing unable to utilise strategy as the Mid-Ohio Indy race runs green from flag to flag The day in Mid-Ohio started out with the IndyCar warm-up session being delayed because of pouring rain, thunder and lightning, and a few power outages. When the Indy cars did go out to warm up, Lotus driver Simona De Silvestro took advantage of the wet track and clocked the fourth best time of the session. Unfortunately for the Lotus HVM Racing team, the weather cleared, and by the time the green flag flew, the Indy cars were running on a dry track. Ambient temperature was 76 degrees with a relative humidity of 83 percent. The race was somewhat of a repeat of the last race at Edmonton. For the second time in a row, the whole race ran green from flag to flag. Without any cautions, the Lotus HVM Racing team was not able to apply strategy and Simona de Silvestro (#78) finished the race in 23rd position. However, the Lotus car showed great reliability and despite everything, Simona did put in some good lap times. “It’s really disappointing,” De Silvestro said. “We weren’t able to use the strategy that we wanted because there weren’t any yellows. It doesn’t matter how hard I drive, without a yellow we can’t get anywhere.” Keith Wiggins, HVM team owner, had this to say: “It’s a bit of the same story as the last race. Unfortunately, it went green the whole way, so that meant that we were pretty well forced into a full-fuel three-stop strategy of the other manufacturers. That didn’t really give us any options to do a strategy, so we ended up with what we had. Her first stint was pretty impressive. The lap times she did were in the 68’s when we were on our own, the same as the leaders. But there’s not much else we can do.” HVM Technical Director Tom Brown: “Just another tough one with it going green all the way. We tried to pull some strategy but we needed the yellows to pull it off. Strategy is one of the few tools we have in the bag and we can’t use it. But, it is good to see green-flag racing all the way. Hopefully, one of these days, we’ll get what we need.” Director of Motorsports for Lotus, Claudio Berro commented: “Lotus will continue to develop the engine for Simona. We want to do our very best for her, so that she and the Lotus HVM Racing team can show some progress and achieve better results in the upcoming races.” Over the wall One thing we can say about the Lotus HVM Racing team is that their pit stops are always fast and well done. The Lotus HVM crew takes pride in doing great pit stops. They practice every time De Silvestro comes into the pits during on-track sessions. Front end mechanic, Mike Howells, better known as “Miguel” started going over the wall to change tires, a year ago, here in Mid-Ohio. “After doing this over and over, it becomes habit, he said. We rely on muscle memory for the right moves. Our instinct guides us. Our whole team works well together because we’re a family. We’re Simona’s racing family.” Aside from changing Simona’s inside rear tire at record speed, Miguel is also the guy who straps Simona into her #78 Lotus machine, when the Swiss Miss gets into the car. “My job is to make sure she is as comfortable as possible and strapped in safely, said Miguel. I figure if she is comfortable, she can focus totally on her driving. We have this quiet ritual, Simona and I, when I’m strapping her down. I do the same thing, the same way, every time. We’ve gained trust in each other over the years.” The top three finishers for today’s IZOD IndyCar race were Scott Dixon (a fourth win in a row at Mid-Ohio for #9 Target Chip Ganassi), followed by Will Power (#12 – Team Penske), and Simond Pagenaud (#77 – Schmidt Hamilton Motorsports). The Lotus HVM Racing Team will be racing next at the GoPro Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma on 26 August at the raceway in Sonoma. Race statistics Time of race: 1:39:48 Cautions: None Lead changes: 2 Average Speed: 115.179 mph
  2. Lotus’s groundbreaking Exige R-GT, the first car in this category of tarmac-racing rally sports cars to be homologated by the FIA, made its competition debut at the weekend in Madiera, Portugal, with works driver and local hero Bernardo Sousa at the wheel The priority was on reliability over performance, but unfortunately despite showing a lot of promise in the opening special space, the car was not able to complete the rally due to an electronics issue. In the first special stage the car ran well and lapped seventh overall, but in the second special stage their emerged a problem with the internal electronics connection which affected all the systems and its laptime, finishing tenth. In the third and final stage an electronics glitch caused the gearbox to fail, the wheels to lock, and Sousa and co-driver Corrado Mancini to career into the wall at slow speed. The Lotus International Team is focused on resolving this electronics issue, and Bernardo’s next date with the car will be an extensive four-day test in Italy at the end of the month to validate all systems. Bernardo Sousa: “I’m disappointed because I really wanted to finish the rally, but we can take heart that the potential is clearly there. We crashed out due to a failure, which is frustrating, but not uncommon when you debut an all-new car. On Special Stage 3, when I braked the gearbox wouldn’t downshift, the wheels locked, and we didn’t make it through the corner. We crashed at about 40km/h. The first stage was promising, though, particularly as there were lots of chicanes and we don’t have power steering. I know that on proper stages we can be a lot faster. I’m very confident this car can compete at a high level. Despite the electronics glitches, the parts are high quality and we will fix this one problem.” Claudio Berro, director of Lotus Racing: “A memorable week for Lotus Racing, with success in the single-seater categories and our debut in the European Rally Championship. We hoped the Exige R-GT would complete the course in Madeira, but it was the car’s first taste of competition and these things rarely go smoothly. The pace is there, we just have to make the car 100 percent reliable, so we’re looking forward to a big test at the end of August.”
  3. Exige R-GT to debut at the 2012 Rali Vinho da Madeira this weekend. The long awaited Lotus Exige R-GT has received its starters orders from the FIA and makes its competition debut this weekend at Round 7 of the European Rally Championship in Madeira, Portugal. The FIA has homologated the car ready for competition and it is the first car to pass the FIA R-GT regulations. The car will be raced by the works Lotus International Rally Team crew of Bernardo Sousa and co-driver Corrado Mancini. The team tested this all new category car for the last five months and recorded vital miles as the course car during last month’s Geko Ypres Rally in Belgium. Sousa, being Portuguese, is racing the Exige in anger for the first time on home turf. The 25-year-old is one of the most promising young rally drivers. The priorities in Madeira will be reliability and further fine-tuning of the car during the punishing schedule of a rally weekend. For Lotus, it’s a historic return to a sport in which the marque has appeared in the past with great success. Lotus won the World Rally Championship with the Lotus Talbot Sunbeam back in 1981. Claudio Berro, Director of Lotus Racing: “This is a very exciting week for us. It’s been a long time coming because the R-GT category is new, and it’s taken time for the rules to be written and, in turn, the car to comply with the regulations. Nonetheless, the process on our side has been smooth and the development of the car is really promising. We go to Portugal with realistic aims, primarily to work on reliability and performance, but it’s going to be great to experience competition. This is the first car to be homologated by the FIA for R-GT. The R-GT class will make rallying more appealing and thrilling than ever, and the acclaimed Exige will earn a huge following I’m sure.”
  4. Lotus Alex Job Racing completed a full weekend without any major hiccups in Ontario to finish ninth, and gaining valuable data in the process in order to develop the car. The Canadian Tyre Motorsport Park gave the team of Townsend Bell and Bill Sweedler their first chance to put the Evora GT through its paces around properly high-speed turns. Bill Sweedler: “Once again we did maximum laps and took another step in the development of this very promising car. As we go to ever track that is new to this car we are coming up with more items to improve handling and overall performance. This week it was aero balance. The guys are doing a great job.” Townsend Bell: “We are getting faster. It is a lot of work for a ninth-place finish. We ran as high as sixth and were able to be respectable, while running what is essentially a test program on TV. We know what our goals are for the season, and we are right on pace with development of the car.” Claudio Berro, director of Lotus Racing: “Some good results this weekend, with a win in GP2 and podiums in both Formula One and GP3. Once again the Lotus F1 Team showed strong pace in the race, but as Kimi says qualifying is important too and Saturday ultimately kept the team off the top spot again in Hockenheim. We all know the team, the drivers and the E20 car has the ability to win and we must wait patiently for everything to come together. Winning something we’re looking forward to, and it’s only a couple of days until Lotus arrives in Hungary to try just that.”
  5. Team Bullrun qualified best in class and fifth overall for Round 5 of the Britcar championship. Having highlighted its wet weather skills in the practice session by beating the field across all classes, the team was a little miffed that race day turned out dry. Nevertheless, the Lotus’s superior fuel consumption came to the fore and Bullrun’s strategy fell perfectly into safety car windows. Despite a rear end shunt from a TVR 45 minutes in, the car held strong and constantly ran in the top four. With 40 minutes to go the Evora slipped through into the overall lead and stayed there to take the chequered flag. The team dominated their class, set the fastest lap and took the overall win by a clear lap. Team Bullrun now leads the Class 3 championship by 21 points and the overall British Endurance Championship by five points. Richard Adams: “What a brilliant weekend. We are just starting to get the best out of the car and the team, and the Lotus package we have put together is starting to show it’s perhaps the strongest in the championship. Bring on Brands Hatch in three weeks.” Claudio Berro, director of Lotus Racing: “A strong weekend for Lotus in motorsport. We can be very happy with Kimi Raikkonen’s podium. Commiserations to Romain Grosjean, who was again scintillatingly fast and was denied a great result by the same alternator problem with struck Sebastian Vettel and took him out of the lead. Renault will get to the bottom of it, I’m sure. There were a brace of second places in GP3 too, and then there were winners. Congratulations to Esteban Gutierrez on his first GP2 feature race win, and what a performance from Team Bullrun in the British Endurance Championship. Great stuff.”
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