But letâs get away from that for now and discuss the teamâs future as far as their on-track racing product is concerned.
Last season at around this time, it appeared to be almost a foregone conclusion that Romain Grosjean would be released by the team by the time the season ended. In fact, then Alfa Romeo Racing driver and now Scuderia Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc had been tipped to replace the 33-year-old Frenchman as the teammate to Kevin Magnussen.
But after it took Grosjean until the ninth race of the 21-race season to score any points, he ended up finishing the season with eight top 10 finishes, including a sixth place finish that ended up being stripped from him due to a disqualification, in the final 13 races.
As a result of what was effectively a last-gasp effort, he got to retain his ride at the sportâs lone American team for the 2019 season.
But the 2019 season has been even more of a disaster for Grosjean, and while he could still return for what would be his fifth consecutive season driving for the team next year, he will more than likely be replaced if he does not start reeling off point-scoring finishes.
Last season, Grosjean retired from only five races. He has already retired from five of the 2019 seasonâs first 10 races, and in the five races from which he has not retired, he has only managed to score two points on two 10th place finishes.
Magnussen has only recorded two top 10 finishes this season as well, but he has scored 14 points on these two top 10 finishes since one was a sixth place finish and one was a seventh place finish, and he hasÂ retired fromÂ only one race.
With Grosjean on the hot seat, could Pietro Fittipaldi get the nod to replace him for the 2020 season?
Pietro Fittipaldi is the grandson of two-time Formula 1 champion Emerson Fittipaldi, and he signed with Haas last November to be their official test driver for the 2019 season.
He first tested a Formula 1 car for the team after the 2018 season ended at Yas Marina Circuit, and he tested the teamâs 2019 car in preseason testing atÂ Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
If the 2019 season does end up being Grosjeanâs final season at Haas, Fittipaldi has put himself in a prime position to take his place.
The 23-year-old Brazilian competed in several series prior to signing with Haas, most recently IndyCar. He was slated to competed in a majority of the races on the 2018 season, but while competing in the FIAÂ World Endurance Championship atÂ Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, he was involved in a massive wreck and broke both of his legs.
After driving for Dale Coyne Racing in one IndyCar race early in the 2018 season, his recovery went ahead of schedule and he drove in the final five races of the season for the team. He recorded a top finish of ninth place in the race at Portland International Raceway.
Fittipaldi has won four championships throughout his professional racing career. He won the 2011 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series championship, the 2014 Protyre Formula Renault Championship, the 2015-2016 MRF Challenge Formula 2000 championship and the 2017 World Series Formula V8 3.5 championship.
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Will Pietro Fittipaldi replace Romain Grosjean at Haas ahead of the 2020 Formula 1 season, or will Grosjean do enough to warrant the team signing him for at least another season? If neither, who will the team sign? There are certainly other drivers out there who could end up driving for the team, Mercedes junior driver Esteban Ocon being a notable one, but Fittipaldi is in a great position to do so.