Grosjean wins Race of Champions

F1 Fanatic round-up

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In the round-up: Romain Grosjean wins the 2012 Race of Champions title.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Grosjean crowned 2012 Champion of Champions (Race of Champions)

“I had to face Sebastian Vettel in the quarter-final before Michael Schumacher in the semi-final – the two Germans who beat us in yesterday’s ROC Nations Cup final.

“Then I had the final with Tom [Kristensen]. We’ve had a good history at this event and I’ve raced him before so it was good to face him in the final. I got a bit of extra luck to be in the right car at the right time but it felt good.”

Hamilton will surprise Rosberg – Button (Autosport)

“I think he’ll probably get a bit of a surprise. I know he’s been his team-mate in the past, but I think he’ll be surprised at how Lewis can get performance out of a bad car.”


Comment of the day

The question of of keeping F1 affordable and sustaining the sport has been in the headlines recently. Would imposing a limit on spending work? Max Jacobson (@Vettel1) thinks not:

I personally think a budget cap is unrealistic. The difficulty in policing spending would be a massive headache for the FIA so currently they are better sticking to limiting wind tunnel hours and further improving reliability.

I would love to see F1 return to the days when a designer with a dream could bring their innovative ideas to take on the established giants and beat them – Lotus are the best example of this. I just don’t think it’s a realistic proposition though.
Max Jacobson (@Vettel1)

From the forum

Happy birthday!

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On this day in F1

Ten years ago today Minardi confirmed Justin Wilson would race for them in 2003. He took over Antonio Pizzonia’s seat at Jaguar towards the end of the season, but lost his place to Christian Klien in 2004.

Wilson later took the unusual step of selling shares in himself to further his career. He now races in IndyCar and scored a dramatic win in Texas earlier this year.

Image © Lotus F1 Team/LAT

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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48 comments on “Grosjean wins Race of Champions”

  1. A quick addition: there are also reports on some French-language sites including Eurosport that Marussia boss Nikolay Fomenko has told Russian media that Max Chilton will take the place vacated by Charles Pic next year. This has of course been widely rumoured, but nothing official yet.

    1. @keithcollantine – I’ve seen the original Russian reports. Fomenko definately said something about Chilton, but my Russian isn’t good enough that I can translate. He’s mostly talking up the idea of taking on Vitaly Petrov, but this is what he said in the interview when the article is run through a translator:

      Who will be the partner of Charles Glock after going to the Peak “Katerhem”?

      Reserve pilot – Max Chilton.

      I’d say the original source is pretty reliable, too – Izvestia is Russia’s equivalent of The Daily Telegraph or The Guardian.

      1. Great report – he has indeed confirmed that Max Chilton will replace Charles Pic (read in original Russian – mine is pretty good).
        Other points: He’s confirmed that Marussia will at least try to stay in F1 until the maiden Russian Grand Prix in Sochi in 2014 and that he hoped to take Petrov on board in the future.
        He’s also rather controversially said that Pic “let” Petrov pass him on purpose in Brazil – he believes this was related to Pic’s contract with Caterham for 2013.

  2. get on with it Lewis, you choose the money over winning car. Stop making the sad face to earn sympathy

    1. choose the money over winning car

      Mercedes won a race this year.

      1. So did Jordan in 2003

    2. The guy wanted a new challenge so he got one. It’s always disappointing leaving a place that has been a big part of your life (like leaving home), but we all do it because sometimes we just need some change. You’ve got to understand his decision, considering that McLaren kept babying Hamilton so now he’s got more freedom. Plus, who doesn’t want to see Hamilton vs Rosberg in equal machinery? Nico wasn’t that impressive this season but a couple years back many people backed him as a future WDC so now we get a benchmark.

      1. Exactly. A new challenge and better pay with a capable team. I’ve done the same (obviously smaller scale) in my career, and even if it doesn’t always work out, I’ve never regretted moving on.

    3. He made a move to a team which has solid financial backing, has pledged to design a car around him, is under the control of Ross Brawn and who will have a significant advantage in 2014 with the new regulations. Not a bad move I’d say.

      Perhaps in the short term the move won’t produce many wins (although I have a feeling that Mercedes and Lewis will be competitive in 2013), but in the long run I think that Lewis Hamilton will do very well at Mercedes. Very well indeed.

      1. Why will Mercedes have an advantage in 2014 ?

        1. Tom Haxley (@)
          17th December 2012, 9:24

          @gwenouille being a manufacturer they should make the most of the new engines, they should be getting info/data from the other teams using them to help them along as well.

          Advantage is a strong word, they certainly will benefit slightly.

      2. For the record:

        We won’t know the true speed of the Mercedes until next year when Hamilton takes he’s first stint in it, I think it will show to be quicker than we think.

    4. Apart from what others have said, I think you only have to look at the season review done so well here by @keithcollantine to see that Mercedes at least got the position their cars Saturday speed merited, while McLaren failed to do so quite well.

      Looking back over the last few years I would say that while team and driver both have great potential, for various reasons they haven’t been able to get out all they could. One of them took a step to change something, and perhaps both needed that.

      1. Mercedes at least got the position their cars Saturday speed merited

        so did HRT ;)

    5. choose the money over winning car

      Except McLaren was ready to match Mercedes’ offer. It was widely reported, so either you decided to comment without doing a rudimentary research on the subject, or you know about it, but prefer to twist facts in order to present the driver you don’t like in a bad light.

      Is it surprising to anyone that these comments usually come from people who aren’t even registered on the site?

      1. @maroonjack

        McLaren was ready to match Mercedes’ offer

        This has come up quite a few times in the comments so I’ve written a short forum post looking at the claims and counter-claims:

        Did Mercedes outbid McLaren for Hamilton?

    6. firstLapNutcaseGrosjean (@)
      17th December 2012, 12:23

      winning car


      He was 4th with that car!!

    7. I think some wistful contemplation is entirely normal here. After such a long relationship with the team and 6 years racing for them at the top echelon, I’d be looking back with bittersweet feelings, too. Now, if it continues into his time at Mercedes, THEN I’d say he’s taking it too far. But for now, I don’t find it bothersome or over-dramatic.

  3. I’m glad Grosjean won the Race of Champions. He’s had a controversial year, but it was his rookie season and the boy has a lot of potential. I hope his performance here helps him retain his seat at Lotus for 2013.

    1. firstLapNutcaseGrosjean (@)
      17th December 2012, 12:26

      I remember that, in Race of Champions are 2 tracks, one for every car, so Grosjean had his solo track. That’s why he didn’t crashed nobody and won. F1 is different, you know..

  4. I think Grosjean celebrated his victory even more than the current F1 WDC did

    1. deep down Vettel knew he won by default because of the car. He knew he had been outperformed all season by a superior driver. No one wants to win like that.

      1. In Formula 1 it’s the full package that wins – neither the car nor the driver – but both together. Therefore having the full package is the only way to win – “not wanting to win like that” is not wanting to win at all. Besides, you’re making it sound like Red Bull was as far ahead of every other team as in 2011 – it wasn’t. If Red Bull was that much better than Ferrari that any RB driver could walk it, Webber would have been ahead of Alonso too – he wasn’t. And Webber is not a pushover either. So Vettel must have clearly had a part in this year’s Red Bull success.

      2. Bob (@bobthevulcan)
        17th December 2012, 8:50

        …or maybe because this win is a significant breakthrough performance for Grosjean, giving him greater cause to celebrate than Vettel, who was always expected to be in title contention?

        deep down Vettel knew he won by default because of the car

        This point has already been argued to death.

      3. No one wants to win like that

        From Alonso’s comments it seems that he wants to win exactly like that next year – of course every driver wants the best car, to suggest otherwise in an attempt to put down Vettel’s achievement is just ludicrous.

      4. I’d be happy to win like that.

    2. Grosjean’s just a naturally happy guy! I imagine Vettel would definitely be more pleased relative to his usual self than Grosjean – after all the F1 WDC is kind of a big deal!

  5. Of course he did. You don’t need to have spatial awareness of where the other cars are for ROC, do you?

    I don’t understand why they call it ‘Race’ anyways. There is never any overtaking. It is just time trials, like qualifying.

    1. The definition of a ‘race’ is-

      A competition between runners, horses, vehicles, boats, etc., to see which is the fastest in covering a set course.

      Doesn’t say anything about overtaking because there is far more to racing than overtaking which is why i don’t just look at overtaking alone when watching a race & why I also don’t need to see overtaking to enjoy a race.

    2. Going by that logic, rallying isn’t racing either.

      1. Nor any athletics event shorter than 800m

  6. BREAKING NEWS- Grosjean’s smile after winning ROC has been seen from space!

    1. Abdurahman (@)
      17th December 2012, 4:53


  7. Oh man I hope Grosjean still has a place in F1 next year. He deserves it more than Maldonado in my opinion although he did cause the pile-up in spa which I can’t defend.

    1. Grosjean actually caused a lot more damage than Maldonado did over the year …

      1. Agreed. Maldonado, to his credit, seemed to mature in his performances as the year progressed. Grosjean, and for that matter Perez as well, seemed to either get worse or keep doing the silly GP2-style crashes throughout the season.

        1. I have to agree with you there Maldonado did get more mature but the reason why I think Grosjean is better is because Maldonado was reckless whilst Grosjean just makes mistakes. Potentially life threatening mistakes but he isn’t reckless.

      2. Never thought I’d agree but, yeah, Maldonado definitely matured over the course of the season.

  8. So does this fit the definition of Irony or Karma???? l0l

  9. Ten years ago today Minardi confirmed Justin Wilson would race for them in 2002. He took over Antonio Pizzonia’s seat at Jaguar towards the end of the season, but lost his place to Christian Klien in 2003.

    Keith, Wilson raced for Minardi (and Jaguar) in 2003 and Klien raced for Jaguar in 2004. So +1 :)

    1. I’ve corrected it.

  10. Congratulations to Grosjean first of all.
    The cinic voice within my head however is saying, well he was “alone” on the track. Speed is undeniable, however imagine if he gets into more accidents next year, if he doesn’t get pole on Monaco i’m afraid it will happen. My point being Romain would be a better fit for the WRC than F1. In my opinion again.

  11. He’s smiling! Smiling!

  12. He has demonstrated that he holds a huge amount of Talent. I believe once Gros learns to navigate the first lap safely he could very well be one of the quickest.

  13. @vettel1, congrats on COTD Max.

    1. Thank you @hohum I’m pretty sure it’s my first! Thanks Keith also!

  14. Romain is definitely a guy to watch out for in F1. And am not jus because he won the RoC!! He’s got speed and the talent is there to see. Needs to work out his race starts and have a clean pass through the first corner, thats all. While dropping him from the team, Lotus F1, maybe bit harsh in my opinion, he deserves another chance in the team next year. If Vitaly can learn from the bad starts he had in 2010 and improve in 2011, i am sure Romain can too.

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