The Lotus Formula One Team is sticking with drivers Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado next year, but it's dropping Renault as an engine supplier in favor of Mercedes power. The 2014 F1 season is barely over, though, and that mean's there still a little time left to put those marketing dollars to work, while still having a little fun, too.
With the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix now just ten days away, the focus is beginning to shift to next year's Formula One World Championship, with more and more pieces to the puzzle falling into place. And the latest news comes from the Lotus team. The Enstone-based outfit has confirmed that it's keeping both its drivers right where they are for next season, with Romain Grosjean partnering Pastor Maldonado once again.
The team currently known as Lotus has had a long string of accomplished drivers behind the wheel, including world champions like Nelson Piquet, Michael Schumacher, Jenson Button, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen. But Kimi is returning to Ferrari next season, leaving a big question mark over who would fill his seat. And now we have our answer.
An estimated 113,162 racing fans joined 20 drivers as the only ones perspiring at Austin's Circuit of the Americas on Sunday, as the recently untouchable Sebastian Vettel seemed to hardly break a sweat as he raced to win the 2013 US Grand Prix. In doing so, the 26-year-old German secured his place in motorsports history with his eighth-consecutive Formula One win, pushing him ahead of racing legend Michael Schumacher, his personal hero, who had been holding the title with seven consecutive victo
Both championships have been claimed this year, with Sebastian Vettel taking the Driver Championship and Infiniti Red Bull Racing the Constructor's. But there's no skunk rule in Formula One, so the last three races of the schedule are going on as scheduled.
The smog around the Buddh International Circuit got so bad over the weekend that the FIA had to change the practice sessions. Then the soft tires that Pirelli brought to be the options were found to degrade so quickly that teams had to change their qualifying and race strategies. The only man it didn't seem to affect was – guess who? – Sebastian Vettel, who put his Infiniti Red Bull Racing on pole position.
Japan's Suzuka circuit is a great track that all the drivers love, but it doesn't usually provide the most thrilling, head-to-head racing. Where it does excel, however, is with surprises and "What just happened there?!" moments, and this year it was no different.
The end of qualifying for the 2013 Korean Formula One Grand Prix left us with five pairs: two chassis each from Infiniti Red Bull Racing, Mercedes-AMG Petronas, Lotus, Ferrari and Sauber. Yes, Sauber. The last time the Swiss team had two drivers in the top ten was Japan last year, when Kamui Kobayashi converted the grid spot into a podium.
Just like at Silverstone last weekend, the German Formula One Grand Prix started with Lewis Hamilton putting his Mercedes-AMG Petronas on pole. The only thing missing at the pointy end of the grid was his teammate Nico Rosberg, who lined up beside him in England but back in 11th in Germany because of a team error in qualifying. So instead it was Vettel in the first Infiniti Red Bull in second, his teammate Mark Webber in third, the Lotus duo of Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean.
The sand, the wind, the penalties, the contact and the one crash – all of them collided to make the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix a surprise affair from day to day and lap to lap. Oh, and did we mention the tires? Pirelli made a last-minute swap after the amusement park ride that the Chinese Grand Prix turned into with the soft compound tire, and brought medium and hard compounds to the desert. That didn't stop things from falling apart for some teams – literally – and that di
Lotus has broken the seal on the 2013 Formula One season, launching the E21 car at its factory in Enstone. With the regulations this year quite similar to those of last year, there are no dramatic changes in form compared to the E20. After some teams lobbied to be able to cover the stepped nose with a "vanity panel," Lotus retained the configuration, the team's technical director saying that the panel would add more weight and didn't make sense to put on the car unless it also added performance.
The sidelining of Robert Kubica left big shoes to fill at the Lotus Renault GP team. After the Polish driver crashed out in a pre-season rally, the team was left scrambling to find a replacement. But rather than dip into its own considerable reserve of back-up drivers, the higher-ups opted to bring in Nick Heidfeld to fill Kubica's seat.
It's anything but business as usual this year in Formula One, and this past week has been no exception, with one team scrambling to secure its future, another receiving the go-ahead to continue racing, and others re-submitting applications in the hope of joining the grid for next year.