Grosjean: Imola two-day format could help Haas

Jon Wilde
Romain Grosjean Haas

Romain Grosjean Haas

Romain Grosjean thinks the uncertainty of a two-day weekend at a track returning to the F1 calendar could help Haas at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

Imola stages the second of the last back-to-back races in Europe this season, seven days after the Portuguese Grand Prix in which Haas continued their 2020 struggles.

But at least the format in Italy may suit the American-owned team, who have not upgraded their cars at all since pre-season testing.

It was confirmed by Haas last week that Grosjean, along with his team-mate Kevin Magnussen, will be leaving the team at the end of the season for financial reasons, with drivers who bring in much more sponsorship revenue set to take their places for 2021.

That allows Grosjean to now speak his mind about the performance of the car he is driving over the remaining five races of the season – although at least the Frenchman thinks Imola could be a better race for Haas as the scheduling may level up the playing field.

The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix is being held over a two-day weekend, with just a single 90-minute practice session taking place before qualifying on Saturday.

Get your hands on the official Haas 2020 collection via the Formula 1 store 

Grosjean said at Portimao that he believes the Haas is the “slowest car in the paddock”, adding: “I don’t have to tell you things I don’t think anymore. I’m not going to race for the team next year, so that’s [being able to speak his mind] a positive!

“The more uncertainty you have, the less knowledge going into the race, the better for us. I think with 10 years of experience in Formula 1 you can try to pull something out of the hat. But the car, sadly I believe, is the slowest in the paddock.”

At the Algarve International Circuit, at least Grosjean and Magnussen managed to beat Daniil Kvyat, but the AlphaTauri’s performance was an outlier and it was not an achievement which gave the Frenchman any real satisfaction.

Grosjean, who despite his comments also finished of Nicholas Latifi, said: “Kvyat was quite slow today but apart from that, the Williams and Alfa Romeos were in front of us – that’s our battle and we were last [among those teams].”

Magnussen finished one place behind Grosjean in P17 and admitted he had taken “a long shot” by starting on hard tyres and running long in the hope that rain, a Safety Car or a red flag – none of which materialised – could make the strategy pay off.

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