Romain Grosjean will not take part in next weekend’s Formula 1 season finale in Abu Dhabi, the team confirmed Sunday. Grosjean is returning home to Switzerland to undergo additional medical treatment on the burns he suffered on the back of his hands in his fiery crash at the Bahrain Grand Prix. The news means that Grosjean’s time with the American-owned team has come to an end, as he and teammate Kevin Magnussen are being replaced for 2021 by newcomers Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher.
“It is with great sadness that I will not be able to do my final race in Abu Dhabi and be with the team there,” said Grosjean. “We’ve tried as much as we could with the doctor to recover and to repair my hand, but the risk of racing is too big for my recovery and my health. So, the decision was made that I’m not going to race. It’s one of the hardest decisions of my life, but it’s obviously one of the wisest. I will miss the team, but I will be supporting them as ever.”
“I’m naturally very sorry that Romain will miss what was going to be his final race with Haas F1 Team, but we are all in agreement that he has to take the best course of action regarding his treatment and recovery from last Sunday’s incident,” said team principal Guenther Steiner. “Romain has shown exceptional bravery and amazing spirit over the last few days — we know how badly he wanted to be able to return to the cockpit of the VF-20 in Abu Dhabi. And we all would have loved him to have been there too.”
Steiner continued, “Romain believed in our Formula 1 project at the very start — he committed to drive for us before we’d even built a car. There is no doubting the determination and sheer effort he has put into helping us to achieve what we have as a young team in Formula 1. We will forever be grateful for that belief and commitment. It is those qualities, his drive and ambition, that I’m sure will aid him on his recovery. On behalf of (team owner) Gene Haas and myself, together with the whole Haas F1 Team operation, we wish Romain well and a return to full health.”
Pietro Fittipaldi, currently subbing for Grosjean at the Sakhir Grand Prix in Bahrain, will compete again for Haas alongside Magnussen in Abu Dhabi, December 11-13.