Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, lotus F1 were not ready or able to participate in the season’s first test in Jerez. As we saw, that test exposed a host of issues for Renault Sport F1’s engine and ERS unit with Red Bull Racing completing only 21 laps that week.
Lotus F1 were ready last week as they set out to take advantage of a Formula 1 regulation allowing for teams to complete up to 100km in “filming” meant for promotional aspects of their team. It’s logical that a team and their sponsors would like to take the car out one afternoon and do some filming for promotional reasons.
Lotus F1 completed the full 100km and said they were encouraged but it also meant that issues Renault Sport F1 discovered during the Jerez test could be addressed and changed prior to the “filming day” and that’s exactly what they did.
Renault said that the Lotus F1 filming day went off with any reliability problems but were quick to inform Sky Sports F1:
“We should point out that no development was pursued during the filming day as stipulated in the sporting regs, rather upgrades trialed in the dyno in Viry were validated,”
If that is the case, then the upcoming test in Bahrain on February 19 should be a big step forward for Renault powered teams including Red Bull Racing.
The irony of the Lotus F1 filming day is that the team put in the equivalent of 22 laps which is more than Red Bull did the entire week of testing in Jerez. Things are looking up at Renault Sport F1.
Oh, and in case you are wondering, new Lotus F1 driver Pastor Maldonado did just fine during the day of filming so we should see some great video of the Venezuelan throwing the new Lotus F1 E22 around the track.