Grosjean not fully fit, but ‘good enough’ for IndyCar test
Romain Grosjean says he’s unlikely to be at 100 percent when he enjoys his first IndyCar test later this month, but the Frenchman says he’ll be “good enough to drive very well”.
After a decade in Formula 1, Grosjean will open up a new chapter in his motorsport career this year, heading west to take part in the NTT IndyCar Series with dale Coyne Racing.
The 34-year-old is no longer impaired by the burns he suffered in his horror crash in Bahrain in December, insisting his hands look worse than they feel.
“My left hand [is] still quite marked,” he said in a video call with the media last week. “But it’s uglier than it is bad, I would say.
“It’s all working well. The left-hand ligament was pulled away, I’ve had surgery, this is going okay.
“The first test for us is the 22nd of February. I may not yet be 100% in terms of what I can do, but definitely good enough to drive very well. By the time we go to race one, I think I’m going to be ready.”
Grosjean’s left hand was more severely impacted and has required more time to heal, but it is now “90% back” according to the former Haas driver.
“Initially the first limitation would be the ligament from my left thumb because that is just time that heals it,” he said.
“But I’ve been very gentle and followed the rules from the doctor, who is a hand specialist in Geneva I really trust. When he tells me I can do something, I do it. When he tells me not to do it, I don’t do it.
“I think that was quite important for me to know where to put the limit. He’s very confident in the ligament being good.
“Really I don’t see much limitation. As I say, when I wake up in the morning, the hand is quite stiff. I need to put some cream, getting it moving and so on. Some of the movements are still a bit limiting.”
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Grosjean’s first IndyCar test will take place in Alabama at the Barber Motorsport Park, a run that will be followed by more mileage the following week at Laguna Seca and additional road course testing.
IndyCar’s decision to postpone the first three rounds of its series – at Barber, St Petersburg and Long Beach – will actually allow Grosjean more time to ramp up his fitness.
“It all actually played into my hands, if I can use the play on words,” he joked. “As I say, I am not worried that we’re [not] going to be okay.
“In terms of physical training, I’ve been going in the gym quite a bit because I know there is no power steering in IndyCar. That’s something I need to relearn.
“I shouldn’t say, but I’ve been on the podium in Formula 1 with a broken right hand twice,” he admitted.
“The pain goes away when you go racing. I’ve been racing with broken parts, I’ve been on the podium, I think it was okay.”
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