Kevin Magnussen: So near, yet so far

Credit: Andy Hone/LAT Images/Haas F1 Media

Kevin Magnussen has eruditely reflected on his debut season with the Haas F1 Team, reasonably satisfied with his year as a whole, but disappointed that the team couldn’t improve on its constructors’ standing from 2016. Despite Haas going into the final race just two-points behind the Renault Sport F1 Team in eighth, Renault would ultimately leapfrog the sixth-placed Scuderia Toro Rosso thanks to a strong performance from Nico Hulkenberg.

“It’s not been a bad year. Obviously, I’m a bit disappointed with today. It’s frustrating to get so close to P7 in the constructors’ championship and not get it. We just weren’t strong enough to do it, but we’ll come back stronger next year.”

Like their debut year in 2016, the Anglo-American outfit remained in eighth in the constructors’, albeit having scored 18 more points than the previous year. However, unlike 2016, Haas did not manage a top-five finish, racking-up a best finish of sixth courtesy of Romain Grosjean at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Haas ultimately finished just 10 points behind Renault, which Magnussen feels is an achievement that bodes well for 2018: “We can take a step forward. We’ve got a baseline now that we can work on over the winter. We know the weakness of the car and we want to improve it by a big margin for next year. We can do it.”

In 2018 the Dane will enjoy the continuity of staying in the same team for the first time in his career, having been a refuge of Renault and McLaren in previous years.