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Permane: Grosjean could lead Lotus

Alan Permane hints that Romain Grosjean is doing enough to show he could become team leader at Lotus in 2014
Trackside operations director Alan Permane insists that Romain Grosjean could lead the Lotus team in 2014 when Kimi Raikkonen leaves for Ferrari.

The Frenchman has produced some impressive results in recent races as he seeks to make up for a troubled 2012 campaign that included a one-race ban for his part in the incident at the start of the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa.

A podium finish in Germany – his second of the season – was followed by a strong run in Hungary, while the former GP2 title winner could well have finished on the podium in Singapore had mechanical issues not forced him into retirement.

Grosjean – who had qualified on the second row of the grid in Singapore – will now hope to end the season strong, and Permane said he felt recent performances had shown he has the potential to become the leader of the Enstone-based squad when Raikkonen moves on.

"I don't see why not, honestly,” he told ESPN when asked if Grosjean could become the Lotus number one. “It obviously depends who we get as his team-mate; if it's a strong character or who it is, but I don't see why not. Now is his chance and he looks to be taking it, which is really good to see.

"I think Romain himself has made - I wouldn't call it a breakthrough - but since the Nurburgring, Hungary, he's just been getting better and better and better. When it counted [in Singapore] he had a difficult Friday, he had a few car problems and didn't run a great deal, but he had an excellent Saturday.

“We knew we had the potential to do well and he delivered, and I think for his head that will be very, very important. He'll know that he can do it."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
22.09.2013- Race, Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E213
21.09.2013- Qualifying, Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E213
22.09.2013- Race, Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E213
21.09.2013- Free practice 3, Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E213
20.09.2013- Free Practice 2: Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E21
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Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel with Ferrari SF15-T
Ferrari team with new SF15-T
Ferrari management with new SF15-T
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Ferrari team with new SF15-T
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Sebastian Vettel, Kimi Raikkonen and Esteban Gutierrez with Ferrari SF15-T
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Ferrari SF15-T

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September 24, 2013 3:44 PM

Grosjean lead a team? Now this comment is something that deserves a 10 grid place penalty. Made me have a laugh anyway. If Nico comes in I expect Grosjean to play bridesmaid yet again.

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