Haas's 2019 F1 problems bigger than if it had bad car, says Steiner

Oleg Karpov and Pablo Elizalde
Autosport
Steiner: Haas problems bigger than if it had bad car
Steiner: Haas problems bigger than if it had bad car

Haas Formula 1 team boss Gunther Steiner believes it would be easier for his team to solve its problems if it had a slower car.

Despite being among the favourites to lead the midfield pack at the start of 2019 and having the fifth-fastest car in pure performance terms, Haas has endured a tough season so far as it has failed to get to grips with how the VF-19 uses its tyres.

Scroll to continue with content
Ad

Steiner, who has labelled the car the "strangest" he has ever worked with, admitted that finding solutions for its shortcomings has been harder than if the car was always uncompetitive.

"We've got a lot of work to do, and we know that for the rest of the season that we need to learn to manage the car and the tyres better," said Steiner.

"If you have a bad car you get a big problem, but if you think with the car which sometimes performs the problem is smaller, you know, it is even bigger.

"Because it is somewhere, and you just need to find it, and it is difficult."

Steiner said it is vital that the team, which is ninth in the constructors' standings, sorts out its tyre-management issues in order to avoid "falling in this trap" with next year's car.

Steiner: Haas problems bigger than if it had bad car
Steiner: Haas problems bigger than if it had bad car

Asked what a realistic target was for the remainder of the season, Steiner said: "A battle. A realistic target result-wise I have no idea.

"To get as much understanding as possible between the tyre and the car.

"The car we have got influence [on], obviously, but the tyre... If that is ruling what your aero does you can't do a lot about it, and to find that one out is difficult.

"So I don't really know. [The goal is] to get a good understanding, so we are not falling in this trap next year, but again the tyre will change next year."

Steiner said the challenge of designing Haas's 2020 car is made trickier by the situation with the current one, but added the team has no choice but to start working for the future.

"It is well-organised," he said of the 2020 car design.

"You have to do it, because you cannot just live day by day. You need to see the bigger picture as well, and that is part of what you need to do.

"You cannot just get eaten up by it. You get eaten up on the weekend, and then you try to go back to a mission about what you want to do also in future.

"And there is a short term, and a long term which you have to have in your mind and just act accordingly, but never panic to [do] something, because that doesn't help as well."

Get unlimited access to the world’s best motorsport journalism with Autosport Plus

What to read next