Haas to continue with Brembo brakes into Spain – Steiner

by Paul Hensby

Guenther Steiner insists his Haas F1 Team will solve their issues they’ve encountered with their braking system sooner rather than later, although the Team Principal of the American outfit revealed that the Spanish Grand Prix comes too soon for a switch to Carbone Industri brakes to be made.

The team tested with Carbone Industri during free practice at the Sochi Autodrom two weeks ago but are likely to continue racing with Brembo in Spain, with further tests required with the other brake manufacturer before they are ready to be run in race conditions, although Steiner believes the switch will happen in due time.

“We started off with CI brakes in Sochi,” said Steiner.  “We weren’t getting enough cooling for them, and if you don’t cool them enough, you overheat the brake itself and the pedal gets long. Also, the wear is very high.

“We looked into it to see if we could survive a race, but we realized we could not. Therefore, the decision was taken to go back onto the Brembo. As it stands now, we will race Brembo in Barcelona.”

Brakes have long been a problem for Haas, with a lot of races in 2016 being affected by them, with drivers critical of the way they worked on track. Steiner revealed that the two drivers had different opinions on the brake manufacturers following free practice in Russia, with Kevin Magnussen preferring Carbone Industri over Brembo, while Romain Grosjean was happier with the updates Brembo had made themselves.

“To figure out how we can fix the problem will take a bit, but we will get there,” insists Steiner.  “It isn’t an easy problem to solve. We will take our time. We know what we’ve got after our Bahrain test with CI brakes, and after Sochi in FP1 and FP2. We know what we need to do and what needs to get done, but it will take a little bit of time.”

“Romain was pretty happy with the latest iteration of Brembo. He said he’s ok with it. Kevin liked the CI better because the bite is better. He just has a better feeling with the CI brakes. Now we need to get the CI working and see where we stand before coming to the absolute conclusion. I’ll be happy when we can check this off of our list.”

Steiner insists getting the brakes to work properly all of the time is priority, but due to the complexity of the systems, it will not happen overnight and it requires a decent amount of testing.

“Everybody needs to understand that this is a very sophisticated brake system,” said Steiner.  “It is not easy to fix. The obvious question, and rightly people ask, is that it cannot be this difficult to fix a brake. It actually is. It isn’t easy.

“This is because they’re highly complicated technologies, they’re highly advanced. When you change from one to the other, you encounter issues you’re not aware of until you try it properly. Without testing during the season, you need to do it in FP1 and FP2. You always have to wait two weeks to do something. So you can never go and do a proper test and do modifications.

“You always have to fit it in somehow. It compromises your testing, and that’s why it takes so long. It’s not that we’re not working hard. Our people are very competent and can do this, it just takes time.”  

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