Romain Grosjean Thinks He's a Suitable Fit for Ferrari's Open F1 Seat
Can he gain an edge on the competition for the coveted spot?
Haas F1 lead driver Romain Grosjean is an ambitious soul. After relocating from Lotus to his current seat last year, the 31-year old Franco-Swiss pilot seemed to be inching closer and closer to Ferrari, a Haas technology partner. As the 2017 season comes to a close, the Maranello team is yet to sign either Raikkonen or Vettel— to new contracts, meaning there could be an open seat for next year. There's no doubt that Grosjean is interested in that positionand as he recently said in an interview, the driver feels he's in a "good position" to do exactly that.
An Autoweek report claims that Grosjean believes he's in a spot that many others have been in before. He compares himself to Mercedes F1 young gun Valtteri Bottas, saying, "Life is full of surprises. I think if you ask Valtteri (Bottas) what he was doing (in 2017) in December, he would have said Williams, and next thing you know, he's in a world champion's car. So it's a phone call (away), and the best we can do is the best job on track."
Whereas Grosjean is a few years older than the Finnish F1 driver, he believes his experience will give him an upper hand when compared to younger competition. After all of these years, he's growing impatient after not having the most successful 2017 stint.
"I'm frustrated sometimes," he admits, "because I love winning and that's all that matters to me in Formula 1. Obviously you come from other categories where you've won everything and then you come to F1 and don't get the chance. It's like you're starting the race 10 seconds behind the others."
Grosjean went onto be exceptionally optimistic about a chance with Ferrari. "I think it's early days. We're not even in July. Who knows what the grid is going to look like next year. Valtteri is waiting on Mercedes, then there's Kimi (Raikkonen)—what's he going to do? Everyone since 2010 has said he's going to be out of Formula 1, and yet here we are, and he's 37 and still here doing a decent job. So I don't know. If there is an opportunity, if there is a seat, I believe I'm in a good position."
Whether he makes the move or not is up to Ferrari. The competition for that coveted seat will certainly be intense, and if he can prove his worth through the remainder of 2017, things could look up for Grosjean. One thing that Ferrari doesn't have to worry about is money, so if the team needs to dish out some extra capital for a top-notch performer, expect them to take that route in the end.