Romain Grosjean caught the auto sport bug a lot later in life compared to his Formula 1™ competitors, as he only started karting professionally in 2000, at age 14. From the junior series to Formula ICA, his career followed the traditional route up the ranks to Formula 1 racing!
Date of Birth: 4/17/1986
Birth Place: Geneva, Switzerland
In 2003, he put his name on the map when he was competing in the Swiss Formula Renault 1600 championship, winning all 10 rounds and claiming the 10 fastest laps –he obviously won the title with ease! Grosjean’s accomplishments quickly saw him move up to the French Formula Renault in 2004, where he was named the second-best rookie.
His first year in French Formula Renault wasn’t nearly as successful as his season with his 10 wins, 13 podiums, 10 poles and 211 points, earning himself the championship. With two single-seater titles under his belt, Grosjean moved up to Formula Three in 2006, where he remained for two seasons.
In 2008, Grosjean had accomplished enough to graduate to GP2, where he performed very well in the inaugural GP2 Asia Series with ART, clinching four wins from 10 races to take the title. He also won two races in the main GP2 Series and finished the season in fourth.
In 2009, he became a Formula 1 test driver for Renault, taking over from Nelson Piquet. He struggled to impress during his time with the team, only turning heads when he crashed in practice at Singapore –in exactly the same place Piquet had during the race 12 months earlier (ironic).
A year later, he began driving a Ford GT in the GT1 World Championship. Soon after, he raced in the Auto GP championship before returning to GP2 with DAMS. He signed with Gravity Sports Management and shortly afterwards was appointed by Pirelli for F1 tire testing. In 2011, Grosjean raced a full season in GP2 winning the championship with three races to go.
In 2012, Grosjean had his first full season of Formula 1 and unfortunately it wasn’t a fairy tale ending. He triggered a four-car crash which led to him being banned for one race because championship contenders had been involved in the incident.
Not only did this happen once, but twice! He caused another collision on the first lap in Japan. Not to mention, he ruined his race in Brazil by tangling with Pedro de la Rosa during qualifying. The line of collisions clearly gave Lotus cause for concern, which is why they waited until the end of the season before confirming he would race for them in 2013.
The 2013 campaign was Grosjean’s second full season in Formula 1, where he began transforming his reputation. He achieved six podium appearances, including a second place in Austin, and he even out-performed world champion Kimi Raikkonen in later races. Lotus retained him for the 2014 year where he currently is in 13th place.
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