20 April 2015
F1 Bahrain Grand Prix: Grosjean happy with seventh after ‘tough weekend’
Romain Grosjean hailed solid tyre management in the Bahrain Grand Prix as one of the reasons why he was able to claim a second successive points finish of F1 2015 for Lotus.
Romain Grosjean drove a measured Bahrain Grand Prix to finish seventh in the first night race of the 2015 F1 season, accepting the points as ample reward following a weekend of hard work in the desert.
The Frenchman, who recorded Lotus' first points of the 2015 campaign a week earlier in China, started from tenth on the grid after again making the pole position shoot-out, before working his way up to seventh.
“It had been a tough weekend until now for me, so it was really great to get another strong seventh position,” he claimed, “The race was great, especially as there was lots of overtaking - I was really hoping to catch Daniel Ricciardo, but he was too quick for us today.
Unlike team-mate Pastor Maldonado, who again endured a race full of incident in and out of the pits, Grosjean - who celebrated his 29th birthday on the opening day of the meeting - was able to go the 57-lap distance without problem, crossing the line as the last unlapped runner after a two-stop gameplan that saw him run the softer Pirelli early on and swap to mediums just after half distance.
“It was quite difficult to manage tyres, especially with the rears, so I think we did a good job to make the two-stop strategy work,” the Frenchman acknowledged, “We only had new medium compound tyres for the race, the rest were scrubbed, so it really was a great job by the team. It was a good recovery from Friday and Saturday's session and I'll happily take seventh place as my birthday gift for myself and the team.”
Grosjean's performance earned the praise of trackside operations director Alan Permane, who saw further progress from the entire Lotus operation in Bahrain.
"That was an excellent, straight-forward copybook race from Romain," he said, "We were able to complete some very quick pit-stops, which helped both drivers during the course of the race, but unfortunately, we didn't have the pace to challenge the Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo even if we were ahead of the rest of our near rivals."
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