As F1Technical reported yesterday, Romain Grosjean has joined the Lotus Renault GP as third driver for the 2011 season. The Frenchman will be joined as reserve driver by Bruno Senna, adding further strength to the team’s impressive driver line-up.
Bruno Senna Bruno, congratulations on your new role with Lotus Renault GP – how does it feel to be part of the team? "It’s a great moment for me. I’ve been trying to get into a good Formula 1 programme for a couple of years so it feels great to be joining such an established team. I’m proud of this achievement and thankful for the opportunity that I’ve been given."
What do you think of the team’s new livery – will it feel special to wear these iconic colours? "It’s probably the most attractive colour scheme in Formula 1 history. Black and gold looked beautiful back in the 1980s, when my uncle was racing, and they look just as stunning on a current car. Also, to be able to wear the same colours that my uncle used for a few years in his career feels very special."
You visited Enstone recently, what did you think of the facilities? "I was very impressed. When you walk around the factory you can see how much is going on behind the scenes and how hard everybody is pushing to take the team forward. Everyone is optimistic that the team will take a big jump forward in performance this year."
What do you hope to learn in your role as third driver? "This year will be all about integrating myself with the team and extracting the most I can from being in such a competitive environment. Being part of this project will give me so much valuable experience and it’s down to me to make the most of it. I hope that I can develop myself and prove to the team that I should be given an opportunity for the future."
Romain Grosjean Romain, you will be a third driver for Lotus Renault GP in 2011. Tell us what it means to be given this chance? "It’s a great opportunity for me to be back in Formula 1 because my dream is to try and get back on the grid. It’s a good time to be here because this team is getting stronger and everybody saw how much the car improved last year. Now, with the arrival of Lotus as a partner, there is a real buzz about this team and it’s exciting to be a part of it."
You have had a long association with Enstone through your links with Renault – did it feel special to go back there? "Returning to Enstone felt just like coming home. It brought back a lot of happy memories because I know the place so well and I have a lot of friends there. It’s also special because this is a new beginning for the team and everybody is really motivated and excited about the year ahead."
You’ve already been around Formula 1 for several years, but what more can you learn in your role this year? "There are always things to learn in Formula 1, especially these days when drivers have even less time in the cars. Just going to the engineering meetings will be valuable and I know I can learn a lot by listening to Robert and Vitaly talk about the car."
What are your objectives for 2011 and will you continue racing alongside your F1 duties? "Yes, I will be racing for DAMS this year, starting off in GP2 Asia and then doing the main GP2 series. It’s something I’m really looking forward to because there is a new GP2 car for 2011 and new Pirelli tyres, so it will be a fresh start for everybody. The team is very motivated and we will be pushing hard to try and win the title."Renault GP