The Lotus F1 Team expects it will soon be in a position to confirm the same race line-up for the 2015 season, giving its strongest hint yet that it has agreed to terms with Romain Grosjean to remain on board.
Having quickly re-signed Pastor Maldonado and his Venezuelan multi-million-dollar sponsorship for 2015 as long ago as July, confirming a contract extension for Grosjean has proven to be a more drawn out affair.
However, it seems that the team’s deputy team principal, Federico Gastaldi, has all but confirmed a stable driver line-up next year, suggesting the team is “a few details” away from locking down a fresh agreement with its French star driver.
“Romain is in pole position for that place and honestly it’s a case of us finalising a few details,” he said. “We expect to have an announcement very shortly.”
“Honestly, we’re very close to having something to announce but there’s no pressure on when we say something,” Grosjean himself replied, when asked about his contractual situation.
Having been extremely vocal in his criticism of both the Lotus E22’s troubles – and less than stellar performance and reliability from its Renault engines – Grosjean is hopeful that the team’s upcoming switch to Mercedes power units will deliver it a more competitive 2015 campaign. Grosjean has scored all of the team’s paltry 8 championship points this season, claiming a pair of eighth-placed finishes at the Spanish and Monaco Grands Prix in May.
“This is something we’ve known about internally for quite some time and I know the engineering department are very excited,” he added.
“I can’t wait to get to testing next season as that’s when we’ll know if next year’s car is any good.”
Images via XPB Images