Grosjean pleased to have confirmation for 2014

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Romain Grosjean is pleased to have finally be confirmed as a Lotus driver for 2014, despite a scintillating run of form in the second half of 2013 meaning that it was never really in doubt.

The Frenchman joined Lotus in 2012 after a disappointing half-season with Renault back in 2009. However, his return to the sport threw up a mixed bag of results, as some outstanding performances were juxtaposed by silly mistakes and crashes, the worst of which resulted in a one race ban. In the second half of 2013 though, Grosjean has appeared to be a changed man. In the final six rounds of the season, he finished on the podium four times, picked up one fourth place finish and retired from the final round in Brazil.

“I am very happy to have official confirmation that I will be continuing to drive for Lotus F1 Team next season,” Grosjean explained. “This past year has been tremendously satisfying for me. We have worked well together, and I know everyone at Enstone is motivated to continue the fight for every last point available.

“I am very excited about next year’s car and I cannot wait to get out on track for pre-season testing before heading to Australia for the first race of the season.”

Grosjean will be joined at Lotus by Pastor Maldonado in 2013, who was confirmed by the team as Kimi Raikkonen’s replacement today.

With two former GP2 champions on its books, the team will be hoping to hassle the front-running throughout 2014. For Grosjean, his third full season will give him a chance to lead a team for the first time in his F1 career, having only previously worked alongside Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen.

Michael Schumacher’s son to make F1 practice debut at Nurburgring

F1 Mick Schumacher
Joe Portlock - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images
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MARANELLO, Italy — Mick Schumacher, son of the legednary seven-time champion, will have an official Formula One drive during an F1 race weekend for the first time next week at the Nurburgring, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari said Tuesday.

Schumacher gets the practice drive in an Alfa Romeo on Oct. 9 on his home track in Germany as a member of Ferrari’s young driver program, taking over Antonio Giovinazzi’s car for the first session of the weekend.

“I am overjoyed to get this chance in free practice,” Schumacher said in a statement. “I’m going to prepare myself well, so that I can do the best possible job for the team and gain some valuable data for the weekend.”

The 21-year-old Schumacher leads the Formula 2 standings after winning races in Monza and Sochi. He won the European Formula 3 championship in 2018 and tested a Ferrari F1 car in Bahrain in April 2019. He also has done demonstration runs in his father’s old cars, most recently this month ahead of the Tuscan Grand Prix in a championship-winning 2004 Ferrari.

Michael Schumacher holds the F1 record with 91 victories, which Lewis Hamilton is on the verge of tying.

Ferrari said two other drivers in its academy program will also get practice drives in Formula One.

Callum Ilott, a British driver who is second to Mick Schumacher in F2, will drive an F1 Haas at the Nurburgring on the same day as Schumacher. Russian driver Robert Shwartzman will drive in practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Dec. 11, though Ferrari hasn’t said for which team.

The German round was added to the F1 schedule after the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season and will be officially known as the Eifel Grand Prix after a nearby mountain range. The Nurburgring last hosted F1 in 2013.