Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Lotus F1 Racing Team Announces Driver Lineup for 2010

Photo Credit: Lotus F1

As the Lotus name returns the Formula 1 grid for the first time since 1994, the predecessor to the new team was a driving force of grand prix motorsports. Historic vehicles of Team Lotus are piloted by racing legends Jimmy Clark, Graham Hill, Mario Andretti, Aryton Senna, Nigel Mansell and Mika Häkkinen (all of which won F1 World Championship with or without Team Lotus). With auto racing pedigree of Team Lotus alumni, the motorsport world eagerly conjectured on who will be the team's drivers. Hosted by the Malaysia's Prime Minister Dato' Sri Najib Tun Razak, the awaited driver lineup for the 2010 Lotus F1 Racing team was presented in Kuala Lumpur.

Assembling the team's race day lineup for 2010 is Italy's Jarno Trulli and the Finnish driver Heikki Kovalainen. Possessing one grand prix victory a piece, Trulli and Kovalainen both come from top racing teams. Trulli arrives from the now defunct Panasonic Toyota Racing outfit while Kovalainen enters Lotus F1 Racing after driving two seasons as Lewis Hamilton's wingman at McLaren. Jarno Trulli commented on his signing with the team as "a privilege" and expresses a desire to "draw inspiration from the heritage of Lotus for our team". In reality, the Lotus F1 Racing starts 2010 as a brand new Formula 1 race team with only a name to bring itself recognition on the grid. Therefore, it was not surprising that the organization sought the veteran hands for their debut in competition. In fact, Kovalainen made a direct response in relations to the driver lineup by saying "I believe that appointing two drivers with the experience Jarno and I have shows how determined the team is to go racing in a truly competitive way, and our pairing sends out a very strong message to our competitors."

Third Lotus pilot, 27 year old Malaysian Fairuz Fauzy, completes the team's lineup as the test and reserve driver. Fauzy has proven himself in professional karting as well as A1 Grand Prix racing.

One of four new F1 teams for 2010, Lotus F1 Racing is currently well underway on building their 2010 race car which will make use of a spec Cosworth V8 engine and Xtrac transmission designed to reduce competitive costs. It will remain to be seen how well the new car, being primarily campaigned by a veteran driving force, will fare against the seasoned teams of Ferrari and McLaren; two teams that were once taking lessons from Team Lotus.

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