|Romain Grosjean – Haas F1's lead driver for 2016|
Formula 1 star Romain Grosjean has become the latest driver to sign up for the 2015 Race Of Champions on November 20-21 at London's former Olympic Stadium.
Grosjean has taken a total of ten podiums for Lotus F1 Team – most recently at this year's Belgian Grand Prix – ahead of his move to the all-new Haas F1 Team for 2016. The Frenchman also has a fine record at the Race Of Champions, not least his run to the 'Champion of Champions' title at Bangkok in 2012. That day Grosjean saw off Le Mans legend Tom Kristensen in the Grand Final, having beaten F1 world champions Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel in quick succession along the way.
Now Grosjean will return for ROC 2015 in London – and Vettel will again be among the opposition alongside fellow current F1 racers Daniel Ricciardo, Nico Hulkenberg and Felipe Massa, making a total of five drivers in action from this year's Formula 1 grid.
Kristensen will also be back in a ROC field that includes reigning World Rallycross Champion Petter Solberg, reigning Formula E Champion Nelson Piquet Jr, British Touring Car great Jason Plato, Williams Martini Racing's Official Test Driver Susie Wolff, reigning ROC Champion of Champions David Coulthard plus MotoGP world champions Mick Doohan and Jorge Lorenzo.
Grosjean said: "I'm delighted to be coming back to the Race Of Champions. This is a great event and there are so many reasons that we all want to return every year. The main thing is that everyone involved just loves racing and driving different cars – so trying out such a wide range of machinery is driving heaven for all of us.
"Then there's the fact that you meet different champions and people you don't have the chance to meet during the year. So we all have a lot of fun off the track but when we get in the cars everyone races at 100 percent – and I'm no different. Rest assured I'll do everything to win the 'Champion of Champions' crown back next month."
The Race Of Champions is an annual end-of-season contest which has been running for over 25 years. It brings together some of the world's greatest drivers from motor sport's major disciplines – including Formula 1, Le Mans, Rallycross, Touring Cars and MotoGP – and sets them free to battle head-to-head in identical machinery.
The event is run over two days: first comes the ROC Nations Cup (on the evening of Friday November 20) when drivers pair up in teams based on nationality to bid for the title of 'World's Fastest Nation'. Then on the afternoon of Saturday November 21 it's time for the Race Of Champions itself, when teamwork goes out of the window and it's a flat-out battle for individual glory as 'Champion of Champions'.
ROC president Fredrik Johnsson said: "Romain has always been a strong performer at the Race Of Champions, and he proved his skill in style when he beat three of the world's greatest ever drivers – Sebastian, Michael and Tom – to become Champion of Champions at Bangkok in 2012. That means he is sure to be one of the racers the others are keen to avoid in the draw. Hopefully we can now expect a sizeable French contingent in the crowd, to add to the cosmopolitan atmosphere in London's former Olympic Stadium next month."
In recent years ROC has visited the Stade de France in Paris (2004-2006), London's Wembley Stadium (2007-2008), the 'Bird's Nest' Olympic Stadium in Beijing (2009), DÃ¼sseldorf's Esprit Arena (2010-2011), the Rajamangala Stadium in Bangkok (2012) and Bushy Park Barbados (2014). Now the contest is returning to its European roots at the iconic home of the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Tickets for ROC 2015 in London are now available via www.raceofchampions.com. For access to rights-free high-resolution imagery and to keep up with all the latest news ahead of this year's event please visit www.raceofchampions.com, Race Of Champions on Facebook plus @raceofchampions and #ROCLondon on Twitter.
Drivers already announced for the 2015 Race Of Champions:
- Sebastian VETTEL, four-time Formula 1 World Champion
- Nico HULKENBERG, F1 star and 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours winner
- Tom KRISTENSEN, nine-time Le Mans 24 Hours winner
- Petter SOLBERG, World Rallycross Champion 2014, World Rally Champion 2003
- Daniel RICCIARDO, three-time Formula 1 grand prix winner
- Mick DOOHAN, five-time 500cc MotoGP World Champion
- Felipe MASSA, 11-time Formula 1 grand prix winner
- Nelson PIQUET Jr, reigning FIA Formula E Champion
- David COULTHARD, reigning ROC Champion of Champions
- Susie WOLFF, Williams Martini Racing Official Test Driver
- Jason PLATO, double British Touring Car Champion
- Jorge LORENZO, double MotoGP World Champion
- Romain GROSJEAN, ten F1 podiums, 2012 ROC Champion of Champions
Drivers confirmed for the ROC Celebrity Skills Challenge presented by TAG Heuer:
- Chris HOY, six-time Olympic gold medalist in cycling
- Ben AINSLIE, four-time Olympic gold medalist in sailing
- Ella EYRE, MOBO award-winning singer/songwriter