Guenther Steiner: “There are a lot less question marks”


Guenther Steiner is expecting a smoother pre-season testing programme this season than in 2016 - Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Guenther Steiner insists the Haas F1 Team are in a much better position heading into testing in 2017, with their years worth of experience likely to make the transition into the new season much smoother than their rookie campaign in 2016.

With a number of regulation changes heading into 2017, particularly when it comes to the aerodynamics and downforce, but Team Principal Steiner expects less troubles in testing this season than experienced last year, although it did not hurt them too much as they scored points in their opening race in Australia with Romain Grosjean.

“In our first test of the season, you try to make sure everything works as you designed it,” said Steiner. “You just prove out whatever you did, and in the second part of the test, you try to get performance out of the car. Or, better said, you try to get performance as quickly as possible.

“First of all, make sure everything works. Everything is new on the car. The first test is quite important just from a reliability factor. You try to learn as much as possible about the car. You get the baseline on the car and you work off that baseline the rest of the year.

“The expectation is to run as much as possible, to understand the car and to make it reliable. Our second test last year was not very successful. We had a lot of mechanical problems. We hope we do better on that one, so when we get to Melbourne we are as prepared as we can be.”

Steiner believes the experience learned from 2016 will bode well this year, with a number of their supposed weaknesses having already been addressed, with the whole outfit a much slicker outfit as a result.

“Last year we went into this not knowing a lot of things because we hadn’t experienced them,” said Steiner. “Now, this year, we know a lot more and we can organize it a lot better because there are a lot less question marks.

“We started last summer to make improvements and to see where we were weak and where we had problems, and we addressed them with our suppliers and our partners. A lot of stuff seems to be working. It seems to be a lot slicker than last year. That’s how it should be.”