Romain Grosjean admitted to being shocked by the pace deficit he had, not only to team-mate Kevin Magnussen but also to the cut-off time that would have taken him through to Q2 in Qualifying for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix on Saturday.
After qualifying inside the top ten in all three races of 2019 to date with both cars, the Haas F1 Team struggled to generate enough grip throughout Qualifying, with Grosjean missing out on advancing by almost a second – Renault F1 Team’s Daniel Ricciardo was fifteenth with a time of 1:42.486, Grosjean set a time of 1:43.407.
Grosjean felt that his lap was a good one but was disappointed to be so far off the pace, and particularly with how strong Haas has been so far in 2019, it was a big blow for them as the Frenchman aims for his first points of the year. He felt the whole weekend has been a complicated one for the team, with the feeling of the car not being as good as it has been previously.
“It’s been complicated since the beginning of the weekend to be fair,” said Grosjean, who will move up two spots on the grid to start fifteenth after the penalties to Antonio Giovinazzi and Pierre Gasly are applied. “The feeling in the car is not quite there.
“It got better in qualifying, we did a good job, so I was quite shocked to see the lap time, and what was missing, first to get into Q2, and then against my team-mate. We need to analyze everything, as this hasn’t been our best weekend so far.
“We haven’t generated the grip, so there’s still more work to be done there. The qualifying feeling was okay, so I’m just surprised to be that far off.”