Formula 1

Grosjean Enjoying New Aero Package, Says Pace is “Encouraging”

2 Mins read
Romain Grosjean has a smile
Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

An up-beat Romain Grosjean said he was enjoying both the new aero package Haas F1 Team brought to the Canadian Grand Prix and the track itself following a strong Free Practice Two.

Grosjean has had a tough start to the 2018 season, and is one of only two drivers yet to score any points in the championship. This difficult start was made worse by a three-place grid penalty he picked up for the Monaco Grand Prix for causing a collision at the start of the Spanish Grand Prix.

Despite his troubles so far the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is obviously a good fit for Grosjean, as he took his first second-place finish at the track in his tumultuous 2012 season. Speaking on Friday, Grosjean said that he “really like[s] the feeling” he gets driving at the circuit and whilst there’s more to do, the initial results are “encouraging“.

It’s been a pretty good day. We had FP1 and we learned quite a bit about the new upgrade, then in FP2 the car behaved nicely. We tried all three different (tyre) compounds between the two cars – there’s some more work to do, but it’s been encouraging. The new aero package does suit me pretty well. It’s an amazing circuit. I really like the feeling I get here.

It’s not easy to find a balance, and the racing line is always changing. The grip is coming up during the weekend, but I really always enjoy driving here.

The practice sessions haven’t gone without hiccup though. Before the weekend started Team Principal Guenther Steiner said the team had a “very lean spares situation“, and that both drivers were prohibited from crashing. Whilst both drivers kept their cars away from the walls, an animal ensured the Frenchman with a penchant for crashing didn’t escape unscathed.

The animal – reports range from a goundhog to a marmot – ran out in front of Grosjean as he headed towards the final chicane. Grosjean, with nowhere to go, had no choice but to hit the animal, damaging his front wing in the process.

Then at the end, unfortunately, an animal decided to cross the straight line. I did follow the advice – I didn’t steer to avoid it but, unfortunately, we had contact. It was high speed. I couldn’t do anything to avoid it.

Animals on the track in Canada is nothing new, and in 2016 Sebastian Vettel ran wide at the first corner trying to avoid two seagulls.

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