Grosjean was convinced Vettel would stay put

Jamie Woodhouse
Sebastian Vettel's Ferrari exit came as a surprise to Romain Grosjean.

Romain Grosjean was surprised that Sebastian Vettel announced he would leave Ferrari at the end of 2020, he was “convinced” he would stay.

Vettel kicked off a crazy week as silly season really moved into full gear.

Carlos Sainz would move to Ferrari as Vettel’s replacement for 2021, while Daniel Ricciardo will take his place at McLaren.

But Vettel’s impending departure came as a surprise to Grosjean who was “convinced” that the four-time World Champion would stay at Ferrari.

“I was surprised by some of the decisions in some way,” he told Sky Sports F1.

“But I think one of the big surprises is Sebastian because I was quite convinced he would carry on with Ferrari.

“That was the big surprise. Things unfolded in an interesting way.

“I would have played the puzzle a little differently.

“I don’t want to get myself into trouble. We all have our own opinions and expectations. But it was interesting. There were obviously a few talks behind the scenes and a few things happening.

“Some people have done a really good job.”

Ricciardo’s seat is now up for grabs at Renault, and Grosjean believes there is weight to the rumours that Fernando Alonso could take it.

“I don’t think it’s over, there’s still a seat at Renault,” said Grosjean.

“We hear the rumour of Alonso. Why not?

“I think there’s still loads of things going on and I don’t think the saga is quite over yet.”

Grosjean spent time as Alonso’s Renault team-mate back in 2009 during his first return to the team.

The Frenchman said he can “testify” that it didn’t work out for Alonso, but said that a second return for the two-time World Champion would be “positive”, even if it did take up a seat for 2021.

“He’s obviously a great driver, he’s always tried to work very hard,” he explained.

“But he already had a comeback at Renault and that was not the best car in 2009, I can testify about it. That didn’t really work out.

“But why not? It would be positive for sure. But also takes a seat away and there aren’t that many seats.

“It’s interesting also with the financial situation with everyone. All companies around the world are not in the best situation right now. So let’s see what comes out.”

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