(Lotus F1 Team)
Lotus F1 Deputy Team Principal Frederico Gastaldi reportedly told his driver Pastor Maldonado to ‘be fair’ and hand over his car to the team’s test driver Jolyon Palmer, however when asked to do so the Venezuelan reportedly said no that he would not according to Finnish newspaper Turun Sanomat.
Maldonado joined the Lotus F1 Team from the Williams F1 Team in 2014 replacing Kimi Raikkonen who had moved back to Ferrari. When the Venezuelan moved he brought his sponsor PDVSA with him.
PDVSA spend £40 million for Maldonado’s race seat at the Lotus F1 Team and this would appear to give him the upper hand when it comes to his contract.
Palmer has already driven for the Lotus F1 Team in two free practice session’s this season with the reigning GP2 champion having driven in place of Romain Grosjean on both occasions. Despite this however it is Grosjean who has scored points for the Mercedes powered outfit so far this season with Maldonado yet to get a point on the board.
Palmer is due to drive the E23 Hybrid again in two weeks at the Spanish Grand Prix so it will be interesting to see if this time he drives Maldonado’s car.
All three Lotus F1 Team drivers will be action at Brands Hatch on Monday as for an open filming day at the circuit where fans have been invited to come to and watch the days running.
© Ben Johnston 2015