Raikkonen back on track after Lotus resolve suspension glitch
1 March, 2012
Mar.1 (Reuters) Kimi Raikkonen’s Lotus team will take part in Formula 1′s final pre-season test in Barcelona starting today (Thursday) after resolving the chassis problems that sidelined them last week.
Raikkonen will be in the Lotus E20 on Saturday and Sunday, with his team mate Romain Grosjean on duty in the cockpit for the first two days at Circuit de Catalunya.
The former Renault team, who had to pull out of last week’s test, said on Wednesday they were confident there would be no recurrence after re-designing and trying out new suspension parts at the factory in England.
Technical director James Allison said on the team website that the problems reported by French driver Romain Grosjean had been caused by the mounting of the upper front wishbone rear arm.
“It’s been an intense few days, but I have to say that everybody has completed their tasks in tremendous fashion,” he added.
“We designed the new parts, manufactured them, and fitted them to the chassis. We then completed the necessary tests satisfactorily and the chassis left for Spain.
Allison said the E20 car was now a kilo heavier than before as a result of the new parts but the extra weight would have “no significant impact on handling or performance” and there had been no need for further crash tests.
The test running from Thursday to Sunday is the last one before the season starts in Australia on March 18.
Raikkonen, the 2007 world champion for Ferrari, is making his comeback with Malaysian-backed Lotus after a two season absence.