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Trulli and Kovalainen sign for Lotus

Lotus have signed experienced Italian Jarno Trulli for their return to the Formula One grid in 2010.
Lotus have signed experienced Italian Jarno Trulli for their return to the Formula One grid in 2010.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen unveiled as the driving team for Lotus' Formula One return
  • The pair have each won one grand prix, Trulli in Monaco 2004 and Kovalainen in Hungary 2008
  • Italian Trulli drove for Toyota last season while Finn Kovalainen was alongside Lewis Hamilton at McLaren

(CNN) -- Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen have been unveiled as the drivers for Lotus F1's maiden season on the Formula One grid.

The Malaysian team are one of four new entrants for the 2010 season and have agreed an experienced pairing in former Toyota driver Trulli and Finland's Kovalainen, who represented McLaren last season.

The pair have each won one grand prix, with Italy's Trulli taking first place in the 2004 Monaco Grand Prix and Kovalainen triumphing in the 2008 Hungarian Grand Prix.

Trulli, who made his F1 debut in 1997 with Minardi, said the team's initial goals were modest but is keen to establish them as the most competitive of the four new teams on the grid.

"We have to set realistic targets for the first year," he told the official Lotus F1 Web site. "We are one of the new teams, so we have to prove ourselves and to gain respect in the paddock.

"We have to establish ourselves as the best of the new teams and see what gap we have between us and the rest.

"Only then will we really understand what gains we need to make during the season. The points system has changed to reward the top 10 drivers, so I would like to see us making progress towards the top 10 by Abu Dhabi.

"We are one of the new teams, so we have to prove ourselves and to gain respect in the paddock.
--Jarno Trulli

"But we should not underestimate the task in hand. Formula 1 in 2010 is an exciting prospect with new teams, established manufacturers fighting back and other young teams looking to repeat their 2009 success.

"Everyone will be fighting hard for results, but we still have all our foundations to set, so we have a lot to do."

Trulli also welcomed the signing of his new team-mate. "It's great to have a younger driver like Heikki on board. He has been in Formula One for a few years so he has matured into a competitive and well-rounded driver.

"His experiences at other teams will certainly help Lotus F1 Racing as a whole and I am looking forward to working alongside him. He is bringing a different character and driving style to the team which I think will benefit all of us during 2010."