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Italian GP: Qualifying notes - Lotus

NEWS STORY
05/09/2015

Romain Grosjean has qualified eighth and Pastor Maldonado eleventh for tomorrow's Italian Grand Prix. After a damp start to the day, the skies cleared and temperatures rose for today's qualifying session. Pastor - who was P6 in the morning - was just 0.015 off a place in the top ten, but will be the first driver with free choice of starting tyres for the race.

Romain Grosjean: "It's quite positive in way when you say that you are disappointed with qualifying in eighth position but it wasn't a perfect Q3 session for us and we have to analyse why we didn't have the pace to be further up the order. It's a long race tomorrow and there are opportunities to overtake here so there's definitely good potential for scoring a nice collection of points."

Pastor Maldonado: "For sure I was expecting to be in the top ten but I've been struggling to get temperature into the tyres and I didn't get very clean laps in Q2 so we lost out by a very small margin. The track changed a lot from this morning and the warmer weather made the rear very nervous. In the race we have an extra set of fresh tyres and we are in a very strong position to fight for good points, I think the top five is possible."

How was qualifying for the team?
Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: It went fairly well and we're glad to get Romain through to Q3. Pastor narrowly missed out unfortunately but he'll start from a decent position and will have a new set of tyres so he should be able to come through in the race and score some good points. Both drivers were swapping times all morning in FP3 and this afternoon in qualifying so the two cars are very evenly matched here; it just didn't come to Pastor at the right time.

What are the considerations for tomorrow's race?
AP: We're aiming to get both cars well into the points tomorrow; and we're looking forward to a good battle with Force India in the race. The cars qualified very closely together and we're competing for fifth in the Championship. It should be an interesting fight.

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