Romain Grosjean arrives in Austin for the United States Grand Prix this weekend with the Frenchman admitting he was impressed the first time he saw the Circuit of the Americas back in 2012.
Grosjean, who took a podium finish at the circuit in 2013, believes warmer weather should help the Lotus F1 Team who have struggled with grip levels at the circuit when running in cooler conditions.
“It looks great and the first time I walked around it in 2012 I thought wow!” revealed Grosjean. “The gradient up to turn one is really something and it makes for a fun first corner when you’re in the car.
“It’s a really well presented facility with an interesting circuit layout. It’s great to be at a race where the local character is very evident and that’s certainly the case in Austin, with the fan reception and the American way of presenting events.
“It’s quite a balanced circuit in that you don’t need one particular thing over another for the car to perform well. In the first year the challenge was finding the level of grip we want and we did see the same for the past two races too.
“Every year so far the race has taken place a little earlier, and that’s good as it generally means warmer weather. This is good for many reasons, but wearing my race-driving hat it’s good as it helps with tyre warm-up and grip.
“Grip is something we’ve struggled with in Austin in the past, so a warmer circuit with a bit more aged track surface should help with that.”
Grosjean admitted that he is surprised how close to the end of the Formula 1 season they are, feeling the year has gone quickly despite having started back at the beginning of March in Australia.
“It’s amazing just how quickly this season has passed, even if it’s seemed a long, hard slog at times,” said Grosjean. “We head to Austin, Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi and then it’s done! The season goes so quick. I’m certainly aiming for the best finale possible for Lotus F1 Team.”