Singapore GP: Lotus team boss Eric Boullier believes his squad can win F1 races this year
|By Jonathan Noble||Sunday, September 23rd 2012, 11:30 GMT|
Lotus team boss Eric Boullier believes his team can still achieve its target of race wins and a title challenge this year - despite difficulties in recent events.
The outfit had been tipped to be one of the strongest after the summer break, but it has not lived up to the high hopes that it had had.
Difficulties extracting speed out of the car in Singapore, allied to a new rear wing design not working as expected, have left Romain Grosjean down in eighth on the grid and Kimi Raikkonen a further four places back.
But Boullier remains adamant that the basics of its car remain fundamentally strong, and that a better understanding of delivering its full pace are key to the team pushing forwards.
Reflecting on why his team has not delivered as strongly as many believed it would, Boullier told AUTOSPORT:
"There was a lot of expectation and maybe some public comments made by some people obviously built up the expectations too much.
"We know it is very tough this year and also you have to develop and keep the rate of the development.
"I think we are doing very well on this side, but obviously if you remember about the perfect weekend, I think here we have struggled to deliver that.
"To be fair, after our strong weekend in Budapest everyone was expecting a good story but every track is different and even here we could have expected much better.
"So we are obviously a bit disappointed to be only eighth and 12th."
Lotus reverted to a Hungaroring-specification of some aerodynamic parts in Singapore to try and understand whether a recent development path had sent it in the wrong direction.
Boullier hopes that lessons have been learned - but he sees no reason why the team cannot head to the next race in Japan upbeat about what it can achieve.
"Like this weekend it will be difficult, but we need to stay concentrated and focused on what we know is working on the car," he said.
"We need to learn lessons of what is working and what is not working, and make sure we deliver from FP1 in Japan."