Haas waiting for driver ‘silly season’

Sep.30 (GMM) Romain Grosjean says he feels so good about his future in F1 that he bought a house last week.

It is expected the Frenchman will stay at Haas, but the news is yet to be confirmed.

“If I saw 100 per cent (sure), it will mean I have something to announce,” he smiled. “So let’s say somewhere between 91 and 99pc!”

And team boss Gunther Steiner also smiled: “I think he will continue to be able to pay for his house.”

It is believed the Grosjean holdup is because of uncertainty with the other seat, which is currently occupied by Esteban Gutierrez.

Steiner ruled out the Ferrari-backed rookie Charles Leclerc.

“We need a driver who can score points immediately,” he said.

Interestingly, Grosjean has scored all 28 of Haas’ points in 2016, while Mexican Gutierrez is yet to open his account.

“Let’s see,” Steiner said when asked about Gutierrez.

“A few races ago, we said we were prepared to wait for some time. In Singapore, he did a good job and the problems at the start were not his fault. So we’ll see how he will go in Malaysia.”

Steiner admitted that Haas is also waiting to see how the driver ‘silly season’ pans out.

Gutierrez has been in the headlines recently as the subject of widespread criticism of his backmarker driving, including by Toto Wolff.

“It is clear that he (Wolff) has never driven an F1 car,” Gutierrez is quoted by France’s Auto Hebdo. “But I don’t see it as a danger to my reputation.

“I think it is the contrary, because it gives me publicity, so I should thank him,” he added.

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