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Indian Grand Prix – Final Practice Results: 5th

Source: autosport.com | lotusf1team.com | twitter

A busy morning for Lotus F1 Team saw Kimi and take P5/P10 respectively in the final Free Practice session before qualifying gets underway here at the Buddh International Circuit.

Summary

  • Warm and bright conditions remained throughout proceedings
  • Romain ran the latest variation of front wing for the E20, as used by Kimi during Friday Practice
  • After struggling for pace on the hard tyre yesterday, the team focused on extracting more race pace from the rubber during this morning’s session
  • Romain spent his opening runs dialling out turn-in understeer with a good degree of success
  • The silver marked hard and yellow marked soft were used on each car during the session
  • Both drivers ended the session with practice pit stops

Kimi Räikkönen, E20-05

Position: P5
Fastest Lap: 1:26.209
Laps Completed: 22

Key Moments:
00mins: Straight out on news hard tyres for an install lap
14mins: First man to set a time; remains at the top until the appearance of the Red Bull cars
29mins: Out on scrubbed hards for race setup analysis
49mins: Final blast on fresh soft rubber
54mins: Big moment through the complex; recovers well
60mins: Session ends; P5 for the Finn

Pos  Driver              Team/Car              Time       Gap       Laps
 1.  Sebastian Vettel    Red Bull-Renault      1m25.842s            20
 2.  Jenson Button       McLaren-Mercedes      1m26.034s  + 0.192s  17
 3.  Mark Webber         Red Bull-Renault      1m26.108s  + 0.266s  18
 4.  Lewis Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes      1m26.151s  + 0.309s  21
 5.  Kimi Raikkonen      Lotus-Renault         1m26.209s  + 0.367s  22
 6.  Bruno Senna         Williams-Renault      1m26.214s  + 0.372s  24
 7.  Fernando Alonso     Ferrari               1m26.521s  + 0.679s  15
 8.  Nico Hulkenberg     Force India-Mercedes  1m26.531s  + 0.689s  21
 9.  Michael Schumacher  Mercedes              1m26.652s  + 0.810s  21
10.  Romain Grosjean     Lotus-Renault         1m26.664s  + 0.822s  21
11.  Felipe Massa        Ferrari               1m26.691s  + 0.849s  13
12.  Pastor Maldonado    Williams-Renault      1m27.140s  + 1.298s  18
13.  Sergio Perez        Sauber-Ferrari        1m27.162s  + 1.320s  21
14.  Paul di Resta       Force India-Mercedes  1m27.193s  + 1.351s  22
15.  Nico Rosberg        Mercedes              1m27.229s  + 1.387s  21
16.  Daniel Ricciardo    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m27.374s  + 1.532s  21
17.  Jean-Eric Vergne    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m27.711s  + 1.869s  20
18.  Kamui Kobayashi     Sauber-Ferrari        1m27.983s  + 2.141s  19
19.  Heikki Kovalainen   Caterham-Renault      1m29.035s  + 3.193s  20
20.  Vitaly Petrov       Caterham-Renault      1m29.237s  + 3.395s  20
21.  Timo Glock          Marussia-Cosworth     1m29.617s  + 3.775s  20
22.  Charles Pic         Marussia-Cosworth     1m30.298s  + 4.456s  20
23.  Narain Karthikeyan  HRT-Cosworth          1m30.824s  + 4.982s  22
24.  Pedro de la Rosa    HRT-Cosworth          1m30.873s  + 5.031s  22

Raikkonen: Lotus is being out-spent

Kimi Raikkonen says it is no surprise that Lotus has not been able to match the development rate of the bigger teams – because it simply does not have the resources to keep throwing money at upgrades.

Lotus enjoyed a strong first half of the campaign, but found itself unable to keep that form up since the summer break and has fallen away from the pace of Red Bull and Ferrari in recent races.

Raikkonen thinks his team has still done a great job this year though, and believes the way the season has panned out for Lotus is simple to explain.

“We’ve done developments but the others have probably done more,” he said, when asked by AUTOSPORT for his explanation as to why the second part of the season has not been as good as the first.

“For sure the others are bigger than us. They have more money to put in and more people to make things. Money makes a big difference in this sport.

“We tried and we haven’t done badly, that’s for sure, comparing to other teams – and especially those big teams that we’re fighting against.

“It’s disappointing that we’re not there, but we have to be realistic. We’ve still done a pretty good job overall.”

Raikkonen thinks it important that Lotus keeps pushing for developments with its car so it can deliver an even better design in 2013.

“We’ll still try to improve this car because everything that we do now is going to also help for next year,” he said. “It’s not like it’s wasting time.

“Those things [developments] will probably come with the new car anyway so if we can put them on the circuit now and learn something then maybe we can make them better.

“We’ll keep pushing and working hard but it’s generally not easy to find half a second. There’s no easy trick. You have to find small, small improvements.”

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