“I was expecting one of us and he said no, for financial reasons I need both of you out”- Romain Grosjean reveals the backstory.
Haas raised eyebrows when it was revealed that both their both drivers Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen would be leaving the team by the end of the season.
However, Grosjean earlier believed that only one of the two would face the axe considering the financial strain caused by the pandemic, but both being shelved caught him surprised.
Speaking in the FIA press conference for the Portuguese Grand Prix, Grosjean said that he had expected the global financial impact of Covid-19 would cause Haas to rethink their driver plans for 2021.
“I knew probably one of us would be out at the end of the year just because the situation around the world and Covid has made it very hard financially for a lot of companies around the world,” he said.
“So I knew one of us would go out and that’s what I said to Guenther when he called me. I said I was expecting one of us and he said no, for financial reasons I need both of you out. So, you know, fair enough, I fully understand.
“I know it’s been a tough year with Covid and that a lot of industries or companies have suffered from it. And as I say, the team is going on a different path and I wish them luck and the best for the future.”
Can’t stand to the backing the replacements are getting
Both drivers said they couldn’t compete with potential offers other drivers could bring to the team. Magnussen said that, for a financially struggling team, his backing would not “make a difference” overall.
“I can’t bring the kind of backing that you need,” he said. “I have sponsors and I have partners, but it’s not at all big in this world, it’s not enough to make a difference, really, for me.”
Grosjean said he has no interest in looking for bigger backing. “I’ve had some partners in my career following me through different time, the teams, but I’ve never been pay driver, as such, and don’t want to become one.”