” I think the excitement comes in the fact that in Formula 1, after turn one, you normally know what’s going to be the race result just because you know the pace of the car, Mercedes is going to pull away,maybe the Red Bull is going to be there. Some things can change, but nowhere as much in INDYCAR.”
Romain Grosjean summed up his excitement for joining Indycar as the newest driver in the series. He will drive car 51 for Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing. Grosjean watch more than 18 hours of Indycar races on YouTube over the Christmas holiday.
“Mid-Ohio 2018 I watched recently was Sebastien Bourdais had an issue in qualifying and started back of the field. He came back like a bullet from the gun and finished sixth just behind Scott Dixon. The race was not over. The strategy was the alternative one. He started on the black tire, went for the reds, just came back from the back. That’s not something you’re going to see in Formula 1 unless Mercedes qualified in the back, which never really happens. That was great to see.”
Dale Coyne talked about why the team had interest in Grosjean despite his lack of wins in F1.
“…we’re impressed what he did before he got to Formula 1. He won the GP2 series by 35 points. It was a year that I think nine drivers in that series made it onto Formula 1. It wasn’t a light year. He won six junior categories before that. He’s a winner. Formula 1, it’s difficult to be a winner unless you’re with the top two or three teams. So we’re going to get him over here with the fourth best team and show that he can still be a winner.”
Grosjean likes that in Indycar the driver has more input into the performance of the car.
“Well, this is something I’m very,very much looking forward to. I’ve been watching the races. The way you can follow the car in front of you, the way you can slide the tires, the way you can either try to play with your ‘push to pass’, the fact that the cars in qualifying are within 6/10ths of each other. This is all really exciting.You need to get the details right and so on. I think, yes, as you say, you don’t have the differential you can move, you don’t have the recovery and all the shaping and the braking, the systems you can have in Formula 1.I think the racing, yes, the car a little bit slower, but the racing looks much better from everything I’ve been seeing.”
Grosjean realizes he still has a lot to learn, and he wants to start sending his engineer, Olivier Boisson, data from iRacing to see if he has the right approach.
“I also told him that I can run on iRacing the INDYCAR. I can send him the data so he can see if it’s completely off the reality or not. I can learn the circuits in that aspect.”
The last five years of Foirmula 1 struggles habven’t dampened Grosjean’s enthusiasm for racing. h eis very excited to try a more competitive form of the sport in the United States.