Formula 1

Magnussen confident of same chance of success at Haas

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World © Octane Photographic Ltd. Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 - Kevin Magnussen. Sunday 23rd October 2016, F1 USA Grand Prix Drivers’ Parade, Austin, Texas – Circuit of the Americas (COTA). Digital Ref :1748LB1D3270

Kevin Magnussen believes that he has just as much chance of succeeding in F1 driving for the Haas F1 Team as he had with the Renault Sport Formula 1 Team, despite the American squad not being an out and out works team.

The French squad did try to keep the Dane on their books, by offering him a one-year deal to stay at Enstone, but Magnussen turned that down and instead opted to take the multi-year contract being proposed by Haas.

Although former team-mate Jolyon Palmer claimed the Dane was crazy to leave Renault, Magnussen believes the possibilities with the American squad are endless.

Speaking to recently the 24-year-old relayed how he felt it would not take him any longer to be a title contender, having moved to a newer, less experienced team.

“Absolutely not. My contract with Haas is not five years, and who knows what Haas can do?

“And then after that the opportunities are… there are no limits. It’s up to me really. I haven’t put myself in a situation where it would take longer. It’s the opposite.

“I could have stayed [at Renault] and hopefully stayed until they win the world championship, but there is no guarantee they are going to win the world championship.

“I think it’s going to take some years before they will be able to fight for it. So I don’t think it’s longer.”

Having made a bright start to their debut season in F1 in 2016, Haas performance began to trail off towards the second half of the year, with driver Romain Grosjean’s complaints about the car over team radio, a common occurrence every race weekend.

They did however manage to finish ahead of Renault in the standings by twenty-one points, a result Magnussen will no doubt be hoping plays out once again in 2017, and one that leaves the Dane feeling quietly optimistic about his move ahead of the coming season.

Knowing Haas switched their focus and resources to their 2017 machine early on in 2016, and now having a years’ experience in F1 under their belt, the 24-year-old feels the team can deliver a solid campaign in 2017.

“Next year will be their second year. They will have learned more. They focused on 2017 quite early.

“They’ve said it in the media as well, that they actually had their main focus on 2017, even before their first race. That’s enough.”

Magnussen is not being unrealistic in his outlook. He knows Haas are not going to start challenging for championships immediately, but Renault, who only offered the 24-year-old a one-year contract, are not likely to be doing that in 2017 either.

The Dane is instead looking much further forward, perhaps to the chance of a seat at Scuderia Ferrari, who Haas still have strong ties to. It would mean putting in the sort of performance that his road to F1 showed he is most certainly capable of, in order to impress the impenetrable bosses at Maranello, but if Magnussen has shown anything in his short time at the pinnacle of motorsport, it is that he is most certainly not one to give up on his dream!

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