More Friday outings for Palmer


Jolyon Palmer will get plenty of time in the Lotus cockpit over the next few months with the team confirming him for five FP1 outings as well as the in-season test in Austria.

The 24-year-old, who joined Lotus as a reserve driver at the start of the year, has already had a number of Friday practice drives while he was also behind the wheel of the E23 at the in-season test in Barcelona.

And he will get several more opportunities as he will also be in action in Austria, Britain, Hungary, Belgium and Italy as well as the final in-season test at the Red Bull Ring.

"I’m really looking forward to driving the E23 again in FP1 and then at the in-season test in Austria especially after not having been in the cockpit these past couple of races," the reigning GP2 champion told the official Lotus website.

"The pace of the car looked very strong in Montréal so the car has come on quite well since the last in-season testing I did in Barcelona. It’ll be good for me to do some more mileage and be in a more competitive car since the last time I drove it."

After a slow start to the season, Lotus are finally finding their feet with both Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean finishing in the points in Canada.

Palmer feels they can make even more progress over the next few races.

"The car looked really good in Canada. The E23 looked strong on the Friday straight out of the box," he said.

"Maybe on the outside some might have thought that we were running quite low on fuel and then in qualifying we surprised everyone.

"The pace in the race itself could have been a little bit better but definitely the overall pace of the car is strong and shows a big step. Hopefully we can keep up the good work and make more progress these upcoming races."