Grosjean wins 2012 Race of Champions
16 December 2012 – Romain Grosjean beat Le Mans legend Tom Kristensen to claim the 25th Race of Champions title in Bangkok, Thailand on Sunday. The Lotus F1 driver won the final with a score of two to nil, adding his name to the list of winners and making it France’s second victory in a row after Sébastien Ogier's 2011 triumph.
Grosjean graduated from Group D, losing his first race against Michael Schumacher but defeating IndyCar champion Ryan Hunter-Reay and Kazuya Ohshima; he then took a surprise victory in the quarter final against Sebastian Vettel, who was stopped by a failure on his rear-right suspension after tapping the wall, before taking revenge for his group-stage defeat by defeating Schumacher in the semi-final.
Tom Kristensen, who lost the 2011 final to Ogier, eliminated the reigning champion in the quarter final before dispatching David Coulthard in the semi-final to set up the final with Grosjean – but, as with last year, the Frenchman was one opponent too many for the eight-times Le Mans winner.
The result is a vindication for the beleaguered Grosjean, who showed great skill in his first complete Formula One season, but also incurred in the wrath of stewards and fellow drivers alike for a string of first-lap crashes.