7 April 2016
F1 Chinese GP: Grosjean ‘glad’ he made Haas switch from Lotus
Romain Grosjean says the move to Haas has been a chance for him to develop as a driver regardless of the success the American team has shown.
Romain Grosjean says the decision to take his career into his own hands and make what was initially considered a 'risky' move to Haas is one he is proud of for more than the early success it has already yielded.
The Frenchman has enjoyed an inspired start to his Haas career, scoring a sixth place finish on the team's debut in Australia before going one spot better with a strategically well-judged drive to fifth in Bahrain.
It comes after Grosjean spent four seasons with the Lotus team, earning him 11 podiums, and decided against staying as it morphed into the current factory Renault team in favour of a move to the brand new Haas set up.
Indeed, though Grosjean says he will forever be in debt to Lotus and the Renault team that first gave him his F1 shot back in 2009, he says the move to Haas has been beneficial for his own development as a driver, particularly as they rely on him for his experience.
“I'm very glad… I owe a whole lot to Lotus, Total, Renault, to all those guys as they allowed me to fly with my own wings today. I made that choice because I believed in the project and I've seen enough to think that, after a few years in F1, that it could be good and today is the proof.
“It's probably something that helps me to grow up, being in a different environment, where there was a very warm welcome, they wanted an experienced driver, they rely on me…. So, yes, you finish a race and you're tired because you have to give a lot of energy but, on the other hand, it fills you up with the confidence that put in you and it's very nice.”
Even so, Grosjean admits Haas has performed well beyond his own expectations, even though he was aware it had a better shot at points than its reliability-hampered pre-season testing showed.
“I knew in testing that we could score points early in the season because I thought we'd be fighting between tenth and 13th or 14th, and, if you get something, you can finish on a high, but no, scoring so many points at the beginning, I don't think anyone was expecting that.”
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