Romain Grosjean has had a taste of IndyCar ovals. Now he would like a seat the major kids’ table for the largest oval race on the earth.
Grosjean, the previous Formula 1 driver who will be racing up coming time for Andretti Autosport in the No. 28 DHL Honda, accomplished his Rookie Orientation Application at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Wednesday. He shared the stage that working day with Jimmie Johnson, who was also doing the Indy 500 rookie plan. Even though Johnson is nevertheless discussing with his family members the execs and cons of racing the massive ovals in IndyCar, Grosjean is all-in for a comprehensive year operate for Andretti in 2022.
Not not like Johnson, Grosjean claimed he felt encouraged by Wednesday’s session at the Brickyard.
“I imagine genuinely the most stress filled aspect was to know what my first lap velocity was heading to be,” Grosjean mentioned in a Zoom job interview with the media on Wednesday. “You improve up or go from there. I had no concept what to be expecting to get to 205. Then it went fairly smoothly, loved it. When you have to go higher than 215, that is exactly where the enjoyable starts off.”
Unusually, Wednesday’s check was also the very first time Grosjean had even found, in person, one-seat Indy automobiles going the standard counterclockwise way all over the Speedway.
“That’s right,” Grosjean reported. “I was residing at the Speedway with my boss, with the family. We observed the two-seaters heading. That’s in essence the only time I observed automobiles heading that direction.”
Grosjean missing his experience in Formula 1 in 2019 following five seasons with the Haas F1 crew. Last calendar year, Grosjean arrived to the United States to race Indy cars and trucks for team proprietor Dale Coyne. He turned in a sound season of a few podium finishes in 13 races, like runner-up finishes in both equally highway-training course races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Now he’s in the yellow No. 24 for Andretti.
“I signify, I assume if I glance at the earlier yr, it truly is an extraordinary journey from (the) hearth (at Bahrain) to racing for just one of the greatest name in motorsports,” Grosjean mentioned. “I’m grateful for the chance I have. Each individual day I remind myself how fortunate I am to be alive, how lucky that I arrived in IndyCar and realized that it truly is a area in which I can be super happy.
“So definitely becoming in a workforce like Andretti, getting Michael (Andretti) coming in the early morning, having all the engineers and the databases, all of that jointly, it really is just a wonderful detail to stay. I know every single working day that I reside a thing rather specific. When it’s a bad day or when you know matters are not proper, I’m like, Hey, you can be grateful of what you are having at the minute and I require to love that.”
Grosjean achieved 228 mph in his rookie test. Fast, yes, but not the quickest he’s absent in a race vehicle. That would be 236 he attained on the F1 keep track of in Mexico.
“Yet again, the query, often ask the issue, how quickly is it,” Grosjean said. “It won’t really feel rapidly for the reason that you go in a straight line in a keep track of that is built for it, then you go in the corner. Yes, you know it can be quickly. If things go improper, they go wrong pretty, very rapid. Even though all the things is underneath management and the motor vehicle feels excellent, it just feels like it really is normal.”
Andretti Autosport’s most recent driver, in addition to his new journey with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, is also finding applied to the new car or truck. Even though the variances are not as remarkable as those between a F1 motor vehicle and his Indy car, there is certainly some having applied to the discrepancies in between Dale Coyne Racing and Andretti equipment.
“Well, the steering wheel is different since each and every staff can place the buttons in which they want,” Grosjean reported. “Some of the buttons are unique. Need to have to get made use of to them. I pressed a handful of moments the overtake button for the pits limiter, a couple points like that. The monitor, the sprint, was a bit different as well. I was getting utilized to it.
“The cockpit feels very significantly the exact same, particularly that we could carry around my seat from Dale Coyne to Andretti. All my seating posture has been the similar. Only detail is I was employing a Ryan Hunter-Reay grip today on the steering wheel, even though we are going to do mine now. That was a bit distinct from what I would preferably like.
“Aside from that, it was excellent. It was just heading and racing.”
Grosjean acquired his very first style of an oval this previous season at Gateway, the place he started off 14th and concluded 14th. Additional significant, he completed the race and was running at the conclusion. Now, it’s time to acquire his IndyCar profession to the next level with Andretti.
“They do want to be fighting for championships, be at the front,” Grosjean mentioned. “It was some thing that I truly feel comfortable with my conclusion. I think you will need to respect ovals a whole lot. Now, as I say, it would not come to feel speedy when every little thing goes perfectly, but if you begin shedding the rear-end in flip one particular, two, three or 4, you know the wall is there.
“You happen to be still executing 200-a thing miles an hour. The automobiles are getting safer and safer. You check out to regard the wall, remain nicely from that zone.”
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