Romain Grosjean is a Swiss-born French racing driver who was born on 17 April 1986. He is one of the most experienced drivers on the grid, occupying a seat in every season since 2012.
His Formula 1 career began three years prior to that, in 2009, when Renault selected him to replace Nelson Piquet Jr following the Crashgate scandal at the European Grand Prix. However, Grosjean struggled and was not retained for 2010.
After returning to the lower classes, he was given a second chance in F1 in 2012, this time with Lotus (formerly Renault) and made the most of it, getting multiple podiums. He has been a stalwart in the paddock ever since, first for the aforementioned team before moving to Haas in 2016. Despite developing a reputation for being error-prone and inconsistent, he is one of the quickest on the grid on his day.
Grosjean has been married to French TV presenter Marion Jolles Grosjean since 2012 and the couple has three children together, Sacha, Simon and Camille. They all live in Geneva, Switzerland, the city where Grosjean was born.
Outside of Formula 1, Grosjean's biggest passion is cooking, so much so that, when he lost his Formula 1 seat in 2009, he originally intended to give up his racing career and become a chef instead.
However, he was turned away from culinary school for being too old and thus decided to give driving another go. Despite this, he has released a cookbook with his wife called Cusine et Confidences.
Grosjean's debut season in Formula 1 was one to forget. Following the Crashgate scandal in 2009, when Nelson Piquet Jr deliberately crashed to give Fernando Alonso an advantage, Grosjean was chosen by Renault to replace the Brazilian. He struggled, failing to score points in his seven races, with his highest finish being P13. In that period, team-mate Alonso got a podium.
Renault opted not to retain Grosjean for the 2010 season, leading to him considering giving up on his racing career altogether. He eventually decided not to and returned to GP2, winning the championship in 2011. This led to him being given a second chance in F1.
Lotus, formerly known as Renault, were the ones to give it to him, pairing him with Kimi Raikkonen for the 2012 season. To say he endured mixed fortunes would be an understatement. He often showed the blistering pace he possessed, qualifying in P3 in Australia and standing on the podium in Bahrain, Canada and Hungary.
However, he also became the first driver since 1994 to be given a race ban after he caused a first-corner pile-up at Spa, and was also involved in Lap 1 incidents in Japan and Abu Dhabi. Nevertheless, with 96 points and a P8 finish in the standings, he did well enough for Lotus to retain him for 2013.
That season was a huge improvement for the Frenchman, who looked to have learned his lesson after the 2012 difficulties. He started it with three top 10 finishes before taking P3 in Bahrain. The rest of the first half of the season was disappointing, consisting of just one further podium and three retirements, but this changed after the summer break. In the final 10 races of 2013, he stood on the podium four times with the highlight being a P2 finish in the USA. Come the end of the year, he had six podiums, 132 points and a P7 finish in the championship.
Driving a poor car, Grosjean couldn't repeat such successes again in 2014. His Lotus lacked both pace and reliability, and he managed to finish in the points just twice, getting consecutive P8 finishes in Barcelona and Monaco.
2015, while also difficult, was an improvement. A combination of reliability issues and collisions saw Grosjean retire from six races, but when he did cross the finish line, he often did so in the points. He finished in the top 10 on 10 occasions, with the highlight undoubtedly being his P3 finish in Spa, a result that sparked wild celebrations even though the team were struggling with financial difficulties and legal disputes at the time. He ended his fourth full season at Lotus P11 in the championship with 51 points.
It would prove to be his last with them though, as he opted to join a new American team, Haas, for the 2016 season. It began in dream fashion with a P6 finish in Australia, with him proclaiming "this is the American dream" at the finish line. Things then got even better a race later as he ended the Bahrain Grand Prix in P5. The team struggled to develop the car from that point onwards, and he could only manage three more points-scoring finishes for the rest of the season. He ended it in P13 with 29 points.
Grosjean endured similar fortunes in 2017, occasionally finding himself in the points in a car that struggled to keep up in the development race. He qualified in P6 in Australia but retired from the race before getting his first points in Bahrain, finishing in P8. He'd go on to score 28 points that season, finishing in P13, one place ahead of team-mate Kevin Magnussen.
2018 began in hugely disappointing fashion as he was forced to retire from P5 in Australia after the team failed to attach his wheels properly. Things didn't get any better for a while as he failed to score points in any of the next seven races, with his crash under the Safety Car in Baku being a low point. A much needed P4 finish in Austria eased the pressure on him, and he went on to score points in six of the last 11 races, ending it with 37 in total, but being beaten by his team-mate for the first since 2013.
He then experienced his worst season since 2014 in 2019, struggling with his form and driving a car which was often unable to find competitive race pace. Finishing in the points just three times all season, many expected Haas to drop him for 2020, but they eventually opted to keep him, giving him a one-year contract.
Romain Grosjean made a blistering start to his open-wheel racing career, winning all ten rounds of the 2003 Formula Lista Junior Championship.
The following year saw Grosjean switch to the French Formula Renault series and he built upon a P7 finish in his first season by bringing home the title in 2005, again winning ten races. Those encouraging signs attracted the attention of Renault who added him to their young driver programme.
His main focus then was the Formula 3 Euro Series and, in his second season, won the 2007 title finishing ahead of other Formula 1 alumni in the form of Sebastien Buemi, Nico Hülkenberg and Kamui Kobayashi.
A step up to GP2 came his way in 2008, which also coincided with becoming Renault's test driver. He would go on to win the inaugural GP2 Asia Series.
The Crashgate scandal that hit Renault in 2009 would ensure that Grosjean suddenly replaced Nelson Piquet Jr in the team, but he failed to keep the seat for 2010 and was forced to return to the GP2 series for another two seasons before he eventually landed a seat back in Formula 1 with Lotus.
Romain Grosjean reportedly earns in the region of £1million a year racing for Haas in Formula 1, placing him amongst some of the lowest earners in the sport.
His official website states that he currently has endorsement deals with Swiss luxury watchmaker Richard Mille, eyewear company Dita and helmet manufacturers Bell.
Romain Grosjean is married to TV star and journalist Marion Jollès Grosjean, tying the knot on 27 June 2012 in Chamonix. They have three children together, two sons called Sacha and Simon, and a daughter born in 2017 named Camille.
Both he and his wife co-authored a a cookbook together called Cuisine et Confidences, which featured assistance from renowned chefs Akrame Benallal, Guy Savoy and Christophe Michalak.
Grosjean was born to a Swiss father, Christian Grosjean and a French mother, Marie-Helene Brandt.
FIA deserve all the praise as Halo saves more drivers
Grosjean: Drivers just have to deal with nasty bouncing
Grosjean: Schumacher a victim of Haas’ ‘typical’ downward spiral
Haas engineer describes the moments after Grosjean’s crash
Grosjean ‘not impressed’ by Magnussen flag incident