Grosjean: Maximum needed in 'tight' midfield
18 June 2017 – Haas' Romain Grosjean says the closely-contested nature of Formula 1's midfield means teams have to extract "100 per cent" from their packages at every stage in 2017.
While Force India has pulled clear in race trim – holding a strong fourth place in the standings – Toro Rosso, Williams, Renault and Haas are covered by only 14 points in the battle for fifth spot.
Grosjean believes the close fight has forced teams to raise their games in order to battle for positions inside the top 10 over both one-lap and race-pace.
"It's actually very exciting," Grosjean commented on the midfield encounters.
"If you were removing the three big teams at the front and only leaving the midfield, there would be a different race winner almost every Grand Prix.
"The difference between pole position and second in Canada was much bigger than from P10 to around P17 or P18.
"That shows how tight it is in the midfield and how much we have to be getting 100 per cent from the car every time."
Grosjean added that Haas has made "some big steps forward" compared to its rookie campaign, with the Frenchman having captured four top 10 finishes across the last five Grands Prix.
"It's been a pretty good start," he said of Haas' sophomore season.
"I think from last year we've made some big steps forward in all places. We're more consistent. We've been able to score points more times than last year, which is good.
"There are still a lot of areas where we want to improve and we can improve, [but] generally I'm very pleased with the way the team has been moving forward."