Date: 14th March 2011 at 10:02am
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Lotus head into their second season in Formula One aiming to improve on the performances which saw them come out on top of the battle of the newbies.

This season the aim is for the development to continue as they establish themselves on the F1 grid.

The 2011 car has performed well in winter testing and it would seem that it?s not just Williams who enjoy a good rear end. Lotus too enjoys a nicely performing rear.

‘If I have to compare to last year, it’s day and night. It’s a huge step forward, and everybody has been working really hard.

‘Mike [Gascoyne] has been putting things together, and Tony [Fernandes] has managed to give us a really good rear end that will solve our troubles in terms of reliability and performance, everything. The team has to think and concentrate about getting it right on the suspension side, on the stiffness side, and on the aero side. I think they’ve done great things over the winter time, catching up with all the new rules, and with all the new bits.’
Jarno Trulli told Autosport Magazine.

The target for all the newbie teams is to close the gap towards the more established teams on the Formula One grid.

Last season Lotus may not have scored a point in their maiden season in F1, but they consistently outperformed the other new teams of Hispania and Virgin Racing.

This season with the developments the team has made Trulli is confident of not only remaining ahead of the newbie teams, but to also compete with the mid-pack teams: ‘Looking at the lap times it’s difficult to get a clear idea, but we can probably chase Force India and maybe Sauber. Obviously we are ahead of Virgin and HRT. This at the moment is the picture that we have.’

Lotus has also announced Davide Valsecchi, Luiz Razia and Ricardo Teixeira as their team of test and reserve drivers for the upcoming season, expect to see glimpses of the trio during Friday practice sessions, while Valsecchi and Razia will be driving for AirAsia in GP2.