‘That Would Be Complete Madness’: Steiner Transparent About Haas’ Strategy

Haas appear to have the slowest car on the grid this season, but team principal Guenther Steiner has defended their approach.

Guenther Steiner and Dmitry Mazepin at Haas F1 - Formula1news.co.uk

Haas’ 2021 car will feature a number of upgrades at the second round of the season in Imola – with the team set to bring parts that weren’t ready in time for the season-opener – but no further upgrades are planned for the remainder of the season.

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Last month, team principal Guenther Steiner revealed that the American racing outfit was already focusing on its 2022 car and said they would soon be “99 percent focused” on next season’s challenger, as they want to be competitive in the new era of Formula One.

Speaking this week, the Haas team principal said it would be “complete madness” for them to waste their limited resources on trying to improve their 2021 car.

“The only development we did was to adapt to the rules for this year, so you cannot expect the car to get any better,” Steiner said.

“With the rule change, the car actually got worse as we took downforce away, so it’s a case of how little can you do?

“On the car, I was always very outspoken because the car is what it is this year. When we started the development in November last year we knew we couldn’t catch up. Why would you waste [money]?”

Continuing, Steiner admitted that they haven’t been competitive in the last two seasons and reiterated that it doesn’t make sense to try to develop a package which will just be used in 2021.

“The car was bad in 2019, it didn’t get a lot better in 2020 and all of a sudden we invest a year of development in a car that’s only going to do 23 races? That would be complete madness in my opinion,” he said.

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“So as everyone knows, we need to limit this [spending] but you always try to get the best out of the car. You don’t say ‘I don’t want more’.

 “At some stage you ask, if you put a big investment in, are we going to be sixth? No. Are we going to be seventh? No.

“The best we could aim for was eighth and then it’s a case of ‘is it really worth investing your future in the next six months and lose sight of the next five years?’ No.

“For me, we’ll be [at the] back this year, but next year hopefully we can – or the aim is to – get back to where we were in 2018, not where we were in 2019 or 2020,” he concluded.

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