Haas will not gag Grosjean


In case anyone missed it, Romain Grosjean's 2016 Singapore Grand Prix was 'the weekend from hell'.

Then again, it's doubtful that anyone did miss it, because the Frenchman appeared to share every single moment of his obvious frustration with us.

While much of his frustration was totally understandable, one has to wonder how some of his comments affect morale within the American team, especially when the Frenchman was informing the world that this was the "worst car" he had "driven in a very, very long time".

However, rather than trying to gag Grosjean's public utterings, team boss Guenther Steiner insists he is happy to let the Frenchman share his frustration with the world.

"You know me, I let people speak," he told Motorsport.com. "He's got an opinion. It's his personality.

"It's easy for me to say, 'Romain, don't say these things any more', but then you guys have no fun! So why should I kill everybody's fun?

"I'm not too critical about that," he continued. "If he decides to be like this, it's OK. After the race we spoke, he was frustrated, he was pissed off. I would be, and I am. He got over it, and he's ready now for the next race. That's the only thing you can do."

Referring to a weekend which eventually saw the Frenchman make the start due to a brake-by-wire issue, the Italian said: "We need to analyse what went wrong, but he didn't do anything wrong, so he doesn't have a lot to analyse. He has to get ready and get prepared for Malaysia.

"His weekend started tough, and it ended worse," he admitted. "It started with going out in FP1, after one lap we didn't have any turbo pressure, so we lost we lost the first session. We had a leak in the system, and we couldn't fix it. We went out in FP2, overambitious, and we got it wrong, because we tried to do too much in too short a time. Then in FP3 we couldn't get it together, and in qualifying he tried hard, maybe too hard, and put it in the wall.

"Before the race the brake-by-wire system was lost. I think he did four or five brakes and it was perfect, and then the pedal just went to the floor. At first we thought it was maybe in the electronics, but we re-set everything, checked everything that we could. But we would have had to take the gearbox off and we didn't know if a valve was broken or a cable was broken. Changing the engine twice, that didn't help, so it was all an adding up of things.

"Sometimes it happens," he concluded. "It shouldn't happen, I know that, we should be better than that. But when it goes wrong, it goes wrong."

While Haas might be happy to allow the Frenchman to continue his public criticism however, one has to wonder how it might affect his chances with other prospective employers.

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Published: 22/09/2016
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