Romain Grosjean says there remains the intention for him to have an outing in Mercedes Formula 1 machinery after initial plans for a test in 2021 fell through.
Mercedes offered Grosjean a farewell Formula 1 test in the aftermath of his fiery accident at the Bahrain Grand Prix in November 2020.
It was Grosjean’s last appearance in a Formula 1 car as he was not cleared to compete at the final two events and was already destined to lose his Haas seat for 2021.
Grosjean was due to demonstrate Mercedes’ title-winning 2019 car at the French Grand Prix before a full day in the car on the following Tuesday.
But the French Grand Prix was shifted forward by a week, causing a clash with Grosjean’s IndyCar commitments, while travel restrictions hampered the plan for Grosjean’s full day in the car.
Mercedes outlined its desire to hold the test in the summer but no such plans materialised.
Grosjean’s IndyCar programme has been expanded for 2022 after he signed up to compete in the full campaign with Andretti Autosport.
He has also relocated his family to the United States, from Switzerland, where he resided through 2021.
“I sent a message to Toto [Wolff] after Abu Dhabi,” he said. “Well, I left a few weeks before I sent a message to him.
“He replied, said thank you, then the last sentence was ‘We need to get you in that car this year.’ So yes, it’s still on the cards.
“There were a few things last year that didn’t make it easy. This year I cannot go to the French Grand Prix because we are racing in Iowa the same weekend.
“But definitely yes. Mercedes is keen to do it. I am keen to do it even though my neck will be dying. You can ask Pato [O’Ward] what that is like. We still want to do it. If it happens, great, but the main focus is now trying to win races with Andretti.”
Grosjean also offered his thoughts on Formula 1’s controversial finale, in which Max Verstappen beat Lewis Hamilton to the victory and title in Abu Dhabi.
“My heart was pumping like hell,” he said. “I think having two cars fighting over one lap for the world championship is amazing.
“I think the wrong perception is to think that the world championship [was won] on one lap. It was 22 grands prix, and if you look at the full season Max had the puncture in Baku, Valtteri Bottas crashed into [him] in Hungary, then the Silverstone race.
“If you look at how many points were lost by Verstappen that were not necessarily his fault, he was the one that deserved more the championship.
“In the Abu Dhabi race, Lewis deserved more the championship. He got unlucky over the last lap. As a race fan, I loved the last lap and it was super exciting to watch.
“It would have been very strange to not unlap those cars and have Lewis first and Max four cars behind over one lap for the world championship.
“On the other hand, for Lewis is was definitely not a great call. As a TV fan, as a spectator, and for the sport, I think Michael Masi made the right decision. I don’t think it would have been nice for the championship to finish under the safety car.
“It would have not have been nice to finish with the guys in first and second being separated by a few cars.”