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Fernandes hails Lotus's performance

Heikki Kovalainen, LotusTeam Lotus boss Tony Fernandes celebrated a 'great day' for the outfit after a strong qualifying performance ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix.

Heikki Kovalainen made good use of the updates introduced in Barcelona to enjoy his strongest outing of the season, making it into Q2 for the first time and finishing in a promising 15th position.

Fernandes was elated with the team's performance.

"I am so thrilled. It is almost unbelievable but this is a great day for Team Lotus and just reward for the effort that the whole team keeps putting in," said Fernandes. "I am so thrilled for everyone associated with our team.

"We have a lot of work to do so we are not going to get carried away, but it is important that we enjoy days like this and the feeling that comes with hard work being rewarded with this sort of result.

"As I keep saying, these small steps will keep us moving up the grid, so well done and thank you to everyone."

Kovalainen was equally delighted and insisted there is still more speed to be found in the car.

"There is a lot more to come from this car and while we have performed really well today we can see that we can keep progressing and taking the fight to the cars around us on merit," he said.

"With the work we did overnight and in FP3 I can feel that we have found a much better balance in the high-speed corners, and we can work more on how it feels in the low speed corners which is where I think we will find even more time, but for now this is a good feeling and puts us into a good position for the race tomorrow."

Team-mate Jarno Trulli did not enjoy such a positive day, the Italian again hit by problems in his car.

Trulli managed to complete just one flying lap near the end of the session and managed to finish in 18th position.

"First I want to congratulate to the whole team for getting Heikki into Q2. That's a great achievement for us and a sign of what's to come," Trulli said.

"For me the session was interrupted by what looks like an electrical issue that meant I was stuck in second gear when I went out for my first run, but we changed the steering wheel and I managed to get a lap in right in the last few seconds that still put me ahead of Rubens."

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