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Grosjean never expected to charge from 17th to 3rd

Oct 27, 2013, 9:00 AM EDT


The majority of the headlines may concern the newly-crowned world champion Sebastian Vettel, but Romain Grosjean produced the stand-out drive of the day at the Indian Grand Prix to charge from seventeenth to third thanks to a one-stop strategy.

Pirelli had warned against stopping just once during today’s race, but Lotus ignored this advice and it allowed Grosjean to battle through the field to finish on the podium thanks to the low levels of degradation on the prime tire. However, it came as a total surprise to the young Frenchman.

“No, I wouldn’t have bet a penny on me being on the podium today,” Grosjean explained. “I think the race pace was brilliant and we did a very brave strategy as we did yesterday. I think it was not the time to be safe, and it paid off, we’re back on the podium. It’s quite amazing from where we started and just the race was alright, tried to go through the field. It was tough until the end, I didn’t know when the tires were going to go off but the team did fantastic, very proud to be here.”

Lotus had been running as high as second during the race, but Kimi Raikkonen could not quite pull off the one-stop strategy like Grosjean and the Finn began to drop off the pace towards the end of the race. With a few laps to go, Grosjean looked to pass Raikkonen but he was forced wide, prompting an angry exchange over the radio between Raikkonen and his team before the Frenchman eventually made it past.

“Kimi was in a difficult situation and I went for the outside and he didn’t see that point,” Grosjean said. “I knew I had to be careful to my engine, I knew Massa had much fresher tires behind so I didn’t want to lose too much time. The good point is that I’m here on the podium and we scored good points for the team and we still have a very strong car for the upcoming races.”

Raikkonen pitted on the penultimate lap of the race to salvage seventh place and set the fastest lap of the race. For Grosjean though, this is his third consecutive third place finish, elevating him to seventh in the world championship as Lotus look to catch Mercedes and Ferrari in the battle for second place in the constructors’.

  1. apexassassin - Oct 27, 2013 at 1:06 PM

    Great drive for Big John, only Vettel passed more cars today. I love it when drivers come through the field like that. Sucky for RoGro that Kimi chose to be a dick and ignore his team orders. Should make for an exciting couple of races to end the season.

  2. thenicklemansbrothera - Oct 27, 2013 at 1:46 PM

    Great drive for Grosjean. Not sure where his partner’s head is. Since his announced leaving he has complained continusly about the car and dropped performance. I don’t think Lotus has anything to lose by having the backup driver finish the season. Wonder if he wants to be sure Ferarri doesn’t drop behind Lotus in the constructor’s points. Please skip the line that he hasn’t got paid. He got his base and will get his podium and points winnings at the end of the year as Lotus and Renault has done before. Lotus doesn’t have the cash flow of RB or the extra $40 million Ferarri gets for just showing up.

  3. wallio - Oct 27, 2013 at 2:15 PM

    Really? You guys are for real? Kimi is the ONLY reason Lotus is ANYWHERE this year. Oh and he’s driving for free, despite having A CONTRACT that says he gets paid. Then he says he’s leaving and Premane does nothing but rip him constantly like a scorn teenage girl. And suddenly his car is crap after he says he’s leaving? Hmmm interesting. Lotus basically says he’s faking his injury, oh and did I mention they FAILED TO HONOR A CONTRACT. Then today they scream and curse at him on the radio. Kimi cooly just responded “Don’t f’cking shout, I’ll move over when I can but not during a fast corner”. As somebody on here who actually races, if my mechanic ever talked to me like that, he’s getting a knuckle sandwhich. Especially when Kimi consistently drags that heap to its only good finishes. Can’t wait to watch lotus fail next year.

    • apexassassin - Oct 27, 2013 at 9:37 PM

      I agree with your post but I’ll point out that NBCS only aired the one radio transmission about moving out of Grosjean’s way, while in truth there were several radio messages which I’m told Kimi ignored.

      Also Kimi wouldn’t have gotten the results he did without RoGro following team orders. 😉

      Regardless, I can’t wait to see Kimi destroy Alonso next year and “Lotus” fall back into the midfield.

  4. wallio - Oct 28, 2013 at 2:53 PM

    Today Lotus apologized for there snafu. I think they remembered who the compentant driver was….

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