ERS issue wrecked Grosjean’s Styrian GP qualifying

Jamie Woodhouse
Romain Grosjean

Romain Grosjean has admitted to a change of heart about a switch to IndyCar, saying he is now “quite tempted by it”.

Haas’ Romain Grosjean has confirmed that an ERS water pump issue confined him to the garage during qualifying for the Styrian GP.

The Frenchman was unable to do any more than an out-lap at the Red Bull Ring before being forced back into the garage.

As the rain fell and the clock ticked down on Q1, Grosjean remained sat in his garage and it stayed that way as the session timed out.

That left him starting P20 for the race, and he was frustrated to have missed out on an opportunity for Haas in the unpredictable conditions.

“We had a problem with the ERS water pump – it wasn’t working so we couldn’t recover any energy on the out lap I did,” he told the Haas website.

“So, we couldn’t even do a lap. It’s a shame as it’s a missed opportunity I guess.”

Grosjean’s team-mate Kevin Magnussen will start from P15 and praised Formula 1 officials for allowing the drivers to complete qualifying despite the difficult conditions.

“It was good fun and I’m glad that they let us qualify in these conditions. There was a little bit of aquaplaning here and there, but it wasn’t a big problem,” he said.

“I’m happy they let us qualify today. For us, P15 is not a fantastic starting position, but I think it’s the best we could do – so I’m pretty happy with that. We’ll fight hard tomorrow to try and get into the top 10.”

Haas team principal Guenther Steiner joined Magnussen in praising race director Michael Masi for getting qualifying underway.

“It was a very interesting qualifying. It was very good from the race director that we started the session, that was a good decision,” he said.

“On our side, Grosjean’s car not going out is not what you want to see. We had an issue with the cooling of the energy storage unit.

“Kevin (Magnussen) did his best and we got out of Q1. He tried in Q2, but his last lap was not perfect, so we ended up 15th, which at the moment is really where we are.

“We need to be realistic about that. For the car that did run, all our operations worked well, and the guys did a good job.

“Let’s see what happens tomorrow when it’s dry again. Hopefully we don’t have the issues from last weekend, it is meant to be cooler, so hopefully we can go racing.”

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