Grosjean lacking preparation for new season


Ahead of the new Formula One season, Romain Grosjean has expressed his concern that he may not be ready for the green light in Melbourne having lost valuable track time in Barcelona.

Due to the adverse weather conditions at the Circuit de Catalunya, the Lotus driver only managed to complete 52 laps, and finished over 12 seconds off quickest man Mark Webber. Grosjean explained his anxieties to the media following the session.

“We spent quite a lot of time on doing things that was good for the team and the car, but normally the last testing is done for you to work with your engineers on fine-turning with the car to have a baseline set-up for Melbourne.

“With that weather we had today, and tomorrow, this is not possible.”

However, with teammate Kimi Raikkonen also getting two days of running in Barcelona, Grosjean has just one session left before Friday practice in Melbourne, placing extra importance on his track time tomorrow.

“Hopefully somehow it’s dry tomorrow and we can work on a few things that we want to test and we know we cannot do them on the race weekend.”

Following the ban on in-season testing, the work undertaken by teams in the pre-season tests is more important than ever. Although losing track time in this way is never ideal, Grosjean and Raikkonen have already completed more testing than in 2012, and they will be looking to build upon their strong showings last season.

IndyCar disappointed by delay of video game but aiming to launch at start of 2024

IndyCar video game 2024

An IndyCar executive said there is “absolutely” disappointment that its long-awaited video game recently was delayed beyond its target date, but the series remains optimistic about the new title.

“Well, I don’t know how quick it will be, but the whole situation is important to us,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said during a news conference Monday morning to announce IndyCar’s NTT title sponsorship. “Motorsport Games has spent a lot of money, a lot of effort to create an IndyCar title. What we’ve seen of that effort, which is not completely obvious, is very reassuring.

“I think it’s going to be outstanding. That’s our shared objective, that when it is released, it’s just widely accepted. A great credit both to IndyCar racing, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, something that our fans love.”

In June 2021, IndyCar announced a new partnership with Motorsport Games to create and distribute an IndyCar video game for the PC and Xbox and PlayStation consoles in 2023.

But during an earnings call last week, Motorsport Games said the IndyCar game had been delayed to 2024 to ensure high quality.

Somewhat compounding the delay is that IndyCar’s license for iRacing expired after the end of the 2022 season because of its exclusive agreement with Motorsport Games.

That’s resulted in significant changes for IndyCar on iRacing, which had provided a high-profile way for the series to stay visible during its 2020 shutdown from the pandemic. (Players still can race an unbranded car but don’t race on current IndyCar tracks, nor can they stream).

That’s helped ratchet up the attention on having a video game outlet for IndyCar.

“I wish we had an IndyCar title 10 years ago,” said Miles, who has been working with the organization since 2013. “We’ve been close, but we’ve had these I think speed bumps.”

IndyCar is hopeful the Motorsports Game edition will be ready at the start of 2024. Miles hinted that beta versions could be unveiled to reporters ahead of the time “to begin to show the progress in a narrow way to make sure we’ve got it right, to test the progress so that we’re ready when they’re ready.”

It’s been nearly 18 years since the release of the most recent IndyCar video game for console or PC.

“(We) better get it right,” Miles said. “It’s something we’re very close to and continue to think about what it is to make sure we get it over the line in due course.”