Lotus technical director Nick Chester has confirmed that the Enstone-based outfit will not pursue the running of their double-DRS device, which has been an ongoing piece of development from the team for the majority of the season. Due to the inclement weather conditions experienced in practice one, the team suffered little dry running with the device.
The device, which is designed to reduce drag by directing the airflow to stall the rear-wing on the E21, has been extensively tested by Lotus throughout the 2013 season. Although the outfit finally used the device at the British Grand Prix, their results failed to greatly impress with Kimi Raikkonen finishing 5th whereas Romain Grosjean was forced into retirement. During practice one at the Belgian Grand Prix, where rain made its almost traditional appearance, Lotus continued to gather data on the device but felt that the lack of dry running prevented the full potential of the device being utilized by the team.
Although the weather prevented Lotus from gaining further data on the device during practice one, the Enstone-based outfit is confident they can continue introducing updates throughout the remainder of the season as both Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean strive to remain competitive after a strong start to the season. In Monza, the team plans to introduce a longer wheelbase, as well as further development packages for races in Korea and Singapore.
“We’re still trying to develop very hard to give ourselves a very competitive run until the end of the year.” Explained Nick Chester, the team’s relatively new technical director. “The passive drag reduction system we’ve been working on for a while. We targeted it for Spa and we’ve run it through P1 and we’ve learned some more with it. I don’t think we’ll carry on through this weekend with it as we didn’t get enough dry running to get where we wanted in P1. We are targeting this strong development until the end of the year and the long wheelbase for Monza is part of that. So we are going to keep bringing developments through Monza and then the following races as well. There are certainly developments also planned for Singapore and Korea.”
Since James Allison’s departure from Lotus back in May, question marks have been raised within the paddock as to whether the Enstone-based outfit can remain competitive alongside the likes of Red Bull and Mercedes at the front. During the last few races this has been confirmed, with both Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean finishing consistently within the points and qualifying relatively well. With the Finn in particular regarded as an expert around Spa-Francorchamps, Lotus will unquestionably be eyeing another competitive result this weekend in the Ardennes Forest.
Picture Copyright © Octane Photographic