• Second Barcelona Test, Day One

No reason to doubt Lotus' pace - Grosjean

ESPN Staff
February 28, 2013 « Live F1 testing from Barcelona | More focus on driver at Mercedes - Hamilton »
Wet weather limited Romain Grosjean's useful running in Barcelona © Sutton Images
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Romain Grosjean says there is no reason to think Lotus will not be among the teams fighting at the front of the pack at the opening round of the season, but said he still needs time in the car to refine his set-up.

Lotus finished last season with a victory in Abu Dhabi but was still a little bit off the pace of the top three teams at most circuits. However, with new parts coming to the car this week at the final test, Grosjean sees no reason why Lotus won't be among the front runners at the first race in Australia.

"The car is good, the team is pushing to bring some more updates so there is no reason that we are not there," he said. "You never know until you go to Melbourne, but we think we are doing our job on our side with the conditions we have. Hopefully the last few days will be better and we can learn what we are lacking."

Grosjean has just one test day left in the car on Friday but is unlikely to achieve much dry running with more rain forecast overnight. He said he had not yet achieved the baseline set-up he had been hoping for with the first race in just two weeks' time.

"We spent quite a lot of time doing stuff for the team and for the car but normally the last test is for you to work with your engineer on fine tuning the car and to have a baseline set-up for Melbourne. Basically with the weather that we had today and we expect to have tomorrow this is not possible. Hopefully somehow it will be dry tomorrow and we can work on a few things that we want to test so that we know what we can and can't do on a race weekend."

His team-mate Kimi Raikkonen is set to test on the final two days, which are expected to be dry, but asked if he could use Raikkonen's set-up, Grosjean said: "It's always better to try and find a little bit your own way with your feelings. Luckily with Kimi we are not so far with set-up and we know the offset from last year. It should be okay, but still when you don't do it yourself it's not the same."