• Bahrain Grand Prix 2010

Lotus boss 'over the moon'

ESPNF1 Staff
March 15, 2010 « US F1 still has 2011 hopes | »
A happy Tony Fernandes on the Bahrain grid © Sutton Images

Lotus Racing team principal Tony Fernandes could not contain his delight after witnessing his team's Formula One re-birth 16 years after Lotus last competed in the sport.

Heikki Kovalainen finished 15th while team-mate Jarno Trulli was classified 17th, although a hydraulic problem forced the Italian to pull over on his final lap, so he officially did not finish.

"I'm completely over the moon," said Fernandes. "I cannot describe the feeling. We're thrilled, we're happy and the spirit in the team is fantastic. I'm really proud of Jarno, Heikki and everyone here. It's a great start and better than I could have dreamed of. We wanted to finish the race, and to do so ahead of established teams is fantastic."

Although pleased to finish the first race of the season, Kovalainen still saw much hard work ahead for the Norfolk-based marque. "Everybody in the team should be really happy," he said, "but the honeymoon is over and we need to start working on better results."

And Trullo confessed himself delighted with the team's achievement after months of hard work leading up to Bahrain. "I'm really happy and proud for the team because in six months every single target we have fixed we have met, so it's really good," he said. "As Tony has said, one day Lotus will win, and I hope to be here when we do."