Romain Grosjean did the first two days of Formula 1 preseason testing for Lotus at Jerez, ending day two comfortably fastest of all in the E21, and afterwards said he was sure he could have gone quicker. Here is a Q&A with the Frenchman at the end of his two day stint in southern Spain.
You did 95 laps today [Wednesday] and we made you walk home! How was your second day of testing?
Romain Grosjean: Yes I know! It was good today; the programme went to plan and showed we have good reliability. The whole test has gone well for me; we’ve done some interesting things and some less interesting things but it all bodes well for the season ahead. My feeling in the car is good and it was great to be at the top of the times today. Even if it doesn’t mean anything at the moment, it’s still good to be at the front.
Did you use the soft, medium and hard compounds?
RG: Yes, we used all three compounds. We’re not 100% yet on the differences between the tyres, however Kimi is next up in the car for two days so he will have a good run on them and give us a better idea of what we need to do for the next test session in Barcelona.
How different do the tyres feel from last year?
RG: Jerez is a pretty tricky track to judge tyres, but since yesterday we’ve been suffering a little bit with graining. It’s not easy to understand everything but I think they work quite well and it’s up to us to find the best solutions.
Your fastest lap was quite comfortably quicker than anyone else out there and it came right in the middle of the day; were you pushing or was it part of the programme?
RG: It was part of the programme. We tried the softs on the car and it worked well. We probably could have done a better time, but were blocked by the McLaren. We kept to our programme and were generally happy with everything.
Are you looking forward to Barcelona and the next test?
RG: Yes, absolutely! I’m looking forward to going to Barcelona as it’s a Grand Prix circuit and we’ll see a little more there as it’s very representative of the season itself. We’ll also have some additional feedback from Kimi, so it will be good to get more track time there. There will be further pieces coming for the car and the team will continue working so hopefully we will have an even better package.
How does it compare to the E20 now that you’ve got some good miles under your belt?
RG: To be honest it’s similar to how it was last year; we identified our weaknesses and the team has been working hard on those areas. We’re still at a very early stage in the year so it’s good to start with a baseline that works well. The main areas of improvement are the general stability and consistency through the corners.