Lotus News Article

GP2 Barcelona (11-13 May 2012)

Monday, May 14, 2012 - 11:00
Lotus GP’s James Calado took a storming pole position and second place in Barcelona’s Saturday round, followed by a strong drive to fourth on Sunday to push his way up the driver’s standings to third.
GP2 Barcelona 18While others, including team-mate Esteban Gutierrez, were impeded by a yellow flag on their flying run in qualifying, Calado was two tenths faster than anyone else. In the race, traffic and a bold tyre strategy from rival Giedo van der Garde pushed Calado to second. Starting P7 in Race 2 he then battled Gutierrez through Turn 1 and then hunted championship leader Davide Valsecchi down but just missed out on the final podium place, finishing fourth.

Gutierrez left with five points to show for a testing weekend. Qualifying 11th because he had to abort what looked like a pole lap due to yellow flags, he finished Race 1 tenth and earned a further two points for setting the fastest lap. On Sunday he fought his way up to seventh.

Lotus GP sits second in the team standings on 128 points, behind leaders DAMS on 157.

James Calado: “Race 1 I started from pole and was quite aggressive with Fabio [Leimer] at the start. I was leading when I came into the pits but Fabio was right behind, and we left side-by-side. Giedo [van der Garde] only changed two tyres, which is how he managed to move ahead in the stops. We should look at that for Monaco because there’s obviously a lot of time to be found. From there I just tried to save my tyres, and had to make do with second. Race 2 I made a good start but then got boxed in at Turn 1, where Giedo and Esteban got past. Then I made it past him and Max Chilton too. I got right up behind Davide [Valsecchi] at the end there, but I couldn’t get past and seize third because the car was sliding around too much while I was in his slipstream and I was hitting the rev limiter at the end of the straight.”

Esteban Gutierrez: “The result is not ideal, and our qualifying position affected us a lot. But I did my best. I enjoyed the latter stages of Race 2 as I fought with Giedo [van der Garde], but unfortunately I wasn’t able to take sixth. Five points from this weekend is better than nothing, but I know we are capable of a lot more. We’ll keep pushing!”