Date: 11th August 2015 at 8:44am
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I have checked my diary and this is not an April Fools joke, Lotus do indeed expect ‘great things’ from Pastor Maldonado this season.

And it’s not even a reference to the large financial investment Lotus will receive from Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA who sponsor Maldonado.

The comments came from Lotus trackside operations director Alan Permane whilst speaking to Autosport Magazine.

He was discussing, amongst other things, the Venezuelan’s speed and how he has for only the second time in his entire career, scored points in two successive Grand Prix.

The 30-year-old, who made his debut over four-and-a-half years ago has finished in the points in back-to-back races just twice in his career.

In 2012, whilst still with Williams he finished the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in fifth and followed that up with a ninth place finish in the USA.

This season he finished seventh in Canada, followed by another seventh in Austria.

However from the opening ten races of the season those were Maldonado’s only points paying finishes.

‘Pastor’s had two very strong races this season and has been quick in all the other ones,’ Permane told Autosport.

‘I’m expecting great things from him in the second half of the season.’

Discussing the frequent unforced errors that his driver makes he added: ‘they’re all errors made by him trying too hard, if you like.

‘It’s not a lack of concentration, he’s trying to gain the last hundredth of a second.’

Can Maldonado really improve during the second half of the season?