Grosjean, Gutierrez have discussed NASCAR try-out with Gene Haas

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Formula 1 drivers Romain Grosjean and Esteban Gutierrez are both keen to try out a Stewart-Haas Racing NASCAR in the future, having both discussed doing so with team boss Gene Haas.

Stewart-Haas Racing team co-owner Gene Haas saw his new F1 operation get off to a flying start in Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix as Grosjean charged from 19th on the grid to finish sixth.

Not only did Haas F1 Team become the first to race in a grand prix under the American flag in 30 years, but it also was the first start-up project to score points on debut since Toyota in 2002.

However, both Grosjean and Gutierrez are looking to take full advantage of being part of the Haas family and try their hand in a SHR NASCAR in the future.

“No worries, I’m happy to do that! Yeah, it would be fun,” Grosjean told NBC Sports.

When asked if talks had taken place with Haas about a NASCAR try-out, Grosjean said: “Yes! Yes!

“I don’t know [when], whenever we can, but it would be brilliant. I’ve sat in one of their cars when I went to the workshop in Kannapolis. It looks big. But it would be amazing.

“I think they did it a few years ago [Kurt Busch racing in the 2014 Indianapolis 500] and it would be nice to do it again. It would be a cross-interest between two racing categories.”

Gutierrez also expressed an interest in trying out a NASCAR in the future, before saying that he too had spoken to Haas about doing so.

“It would be very interesting to do as an activity and to try the car, imagine the difference,” Gutierrez said to NBC Sports.

“From time to time we do [discuss it],” he added.

Gutierrez also believes that some of the experience Haas will bring from NASCAR to F1 could aid others in the series to open up to new approaches, particularly when it comes to commincations and team management.

“Technically, it’s very different to NASCAR. You cannot compare it,” Gutierrez said. “The approach that they have in terms of the business model of the team is very good, to make a team out of nothing.

“Communication-wise, it is very different in the approach and experience they bring from NASCAR. The knowledge that they bring from NASCAR will help to change a bit the approach of many teams that they have here in Europe.

“So it can only be good for Formula 1.”

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.