Romain Grosjean admits using psychologist in a bid to overcome spate of crashes
Lotus driver reckons he's "learnt how to put everything together"
By Mike Wise. Last Updated: January 31, 2013 3:42pm
Romain Grosjean has revealed that he sought help from a psychologist in a bid to overcome the spate of crashes he caused last season.
Although the Lotus driver showed a genuine turn of pace in his first full Formula 1 season and scored three podium finishes, he was also involved in a number of incidents - particularly at the start of races.
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Infamously, Grosjean triggered a spectacular multi-car pile-up at the first corner of the Belgian Grand Prix for which he picked up a one-race ban.
The 26-year-old Frenchman returned vowing to improve, but not before causing another collision at the start of the Japanese Grand Prix for which Mark Webber branded him a "first-lap nutcase".
Grosjean had already started seeing a psychologist by then and after a protracted period of discussions with Lotus bosses and team owners Genii Capital, a contract extension was announced shortly before Christmas.
Summing up his 2012 season in an interview with Sky Sports F1 at the launch of Lotus's new car on Monday, Grosjean told Ted Kravitz: "I don't think it went entirely the way I wanted. We had too many incidents. We had good results - quicker than I was expecting - but maybe I wanted a little bit too much.
"(It was) not an easy end of the season but I think I've learnt how to put everything together for this year. We know that there won't be any more chances so I'll have to deliver what the team want.
"It's not a secret that I started work with a psychologist in September last year and it went very well during the winter. I had a lot of discussion with Genii, the owner, to try to help them understand and take the right decision. And when they called me to say, 'Okay we go again for one more year' I was more than happy."
Lotus's Eric Boullier said they gave Grosjean all the support they could in the wake of his ban, which was served at the Italian Grand Prix.
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Watch a repeat of Monday's launch, plus interviews with senior team members including drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean, on Sky Sports F1 at 7pm on Thursday.
The Team Principal is confident that the former GP2 champion will emerge as a reformed character in 2013 but stressed that more is required of him.
"We had a couple of issues with Romain. The 2012 season didn't exactly match the expectation we had from him," Boullier said.
"If we had to continue with Romain, we would be comfortable that he would have understood that we wanted what I was expecting from him.
"Since he got his ban last year, we had pretty intensive discussions together, a lot of change around him and a lot of support needed for him to understand. He had to find out by himself what to expect.
"He won every Championship he participated in before, so he knows what it is to win races and win Championships. But I think the way he handled Formula 1 in 2012 was maybe not the most efficient one and he got lost somewhere.
"We believe he has some speed, some potential, so we had to make sure he understood everything we are expecting from him."