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Honda form "amazing" for Formula 1 - Grosjean

Romain Grosjean says Toro Rosso-Honda’s surprise form is “amazing” for Formula 1, because it proves new manufacturers can come in and be successful.

Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-18 and Pierre Gasly, Scuderia Toro Rosso STR13 battle
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team, and Pierre Gasly, Toro Rosso, in the drivers parade
Brendon Hartley, Toro Rosso STR13 Honda
Pierre Gasly, Toro Rosso STR13 Honda, Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-18 Ferrari, and Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W09
Pierre Gasly, Scuderia Toro Rosso STR13
Pierre Gasly, Scuderia Toro Rosso STR13
Pierre Gasly, Scuderia Toro Rosso STR13
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-18 Ferrari, Kevin Magnussen, Haas F1 Team VF-18 Ferrari
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-18 Ferrari
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-18 Ferrari, leads Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W09
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-18 Ferrari

After a difficult first race of 2018 in Australia, Pierre Gasly was best of the midfield F1 runners in the Bahrain Grand Prix, recording Honda's best result since it returned to F1 in 2015 by finishing fourth.

Grosjean said the recent success stories of his Haas team and Honda's new partnership with STR shows what's possible in Formula 1 if you keep working hard and don't give up.

"I wasn't happy they were in front of us, but I'm happy that Honda, with a good collaboration with Toro Rosso, managed to get such a good result," Grosjean said.

"Qualifying everyone was like 'oh in the race they're gonna fall down', but actually no, they finished fourth.

"For Formula 1 in general it is amazing. It shows a constructor, like the Haas project, can be successful after three years. I think it's great for Formula 1. It shows you can do it."

Former Toro Rosso driver Carlos Sainz agreed, saying STR deserved the result for working so hard to adapt its car to the Honda engine.

"I saw the mechanics, I went down to shake hands with them and congratulate them," he said.

"It's good for them, they deserve it – they've pushed hard over the winter to get that engine back into the car, redesign the car. I think it's a good story for Formula 1."

Grosjean said the current unpredictability of form behind Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull made it "super exciting" to be involved in F1's current midfield fight.

"In Melbourne it was Haas, Renault, McLaren, Toro Rosso; In Bahrain it was Toro Rosso, us, Renault, McLaren," Grosjean added.

"It's super tight and super exciting, and even in qualifying you know you need to get things right, and the same thing in the race.

"Hopefully we can stay in front and have a good season."

Bad communication caused Magnussen mix-up

Grosjean endured a difficult race in Bahrain, thanks to a damaged car, while teammate Kevin Magnussen finished fifth behind Gasly.

But Grosjean and Magnussen almost collided at Turn 2 when Magnussen mistakenly thought Grosjean was letting him through, and the Dane reacted furiously over team radio.

Grosjean explained the incident was the result of him being focused on racing Esteban Ocon's Force India, plus the "unfortunate timing" of Magnussen's second pitstop and "bad communication" from the team.

Grosjean said the situation had been reviewed and resolved by Haas internally.

Team boss Gunther Steiner said: "We didn't give clear instruction what to do, so there was confusion, therefore it came over very badly.

"We just got a little bit slow in reacting to it. I wouldn't say it was wrong, we just need to be more clear about it."

Magnussen added: "We've talked many times about what we do in those kind of situations. There's a clear set of guidelines, so we've just got to stick to those."

Additional reporting by Adam Cooper, Edd Straw and Oleg Karpov

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