Early Focus on 2017 Prevented Haas from Ending ‘in a hole’ – Steiner

by Paul Hensby

The way the Haas F1 Team worked during their rookie Formula 1 campaign in 2016, which included an early move to the development of their 2017 challenger, is the reason why they have not experienced a dip in form this season, according to Team Principal Guenther Steiner.

The team made a great start to its Formula 1 life with Romain Grosjean securing three points finishes inside its first four races, but the decision was made early to focus on 2017 in order to maintain their position amid the midfield and to prevent their results dropping off.

The team’s results fell off towards the end of 2016, with outsiders at that time not understanding that their resources had stopped working on the VF-16 in order to bring the VF-17 up to a desirable level that would enable them to score points, and at the midway point to the season, they have already equalled their points tally of their debut campaign, with both Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen showing good pace so far.

“Part of my job is to prepare not to get in a hole,” said Steiner to Motorsport.com. “You can always end up in a hole but I had a terrible second season in one of my projects and I learnt a lot out of it.

“Everybody was aware last year that we needed to be careful not to drop the ball. When last year we decided to switch over to develop the ’17 car, because it wasn’t going bad for us [at the time] it was like ‘why are you not bringing updates, haven’t you got any money?’

“No, no. We didn’t want to, because we’d just confuse ourselves. First of all, we’d confuse ourselves in ’16 plus, we’d fall behind in preparing ourselves for ’17.

“I couldn’t promise, but I always said ‘we are of the second season [trend], it’s pretty logical why it goes wrong, and having had it go wrong you do your best not to have it go wrong [again]’.”

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