N After Romain Grosjean turned for the pit stop on lap 15, the fans couldn't believe their eyes. The mechanic in the front left did not get the wheel attached. The Frenchman was only sent back into the race seven seconds late. But the bike didn't last long: 14 laps later the Haas with the starting number 8 rolled out.
Team boss Steiner with irony
As in the previous year, the bike was only loosely attached to the suspension . Team boss Guenther Steiner then spoke of a déjà vu. “It's really bewitched. Last year after Melbourne we ran 20 races without any problems. And as soon as we come back here, it starts again. We see it positively: After all, this time we brought 50 percent of the cars to the finish line. Maybe we will be able to achieve 100 percent next year. '
According to Steiner, the loss of the wheel was already apparent during assembly:' The mechanic noticed that something did not fit and took the wheel off again. and screwed on. That worked too. In contrast to the previous year, the bike wasn't loose. Unfortunately, the thread was damaged the second time it was applied. In the end, a break in the wheel nut led to failure. “
Grosjean had already lost so much time due to the pit stop that there would have been no more points even if he had reached the finish. The team apologized to the driver for the mistake. Grosjean himself quickly checked the faux pas, according to Steiner: “He's not particularly depressed. He knows that he has a good car with which he can still score many points. We have to leave that behind us now and concentrate on the tasks ahead. ”
So far, no surprises for Haas
The team boss tries the positive onesPages to highlight: “We are very competitive, which the starting positions six and seven show. Kevin drove a good race. We have eight points more than last year. The negative side is that it could have been a lot more. But I won't burst into tears for that. We know the potential of the car. We just have to implement it. ”
The VF-19 has so far fully met expectations. With a little help from Ferrari, the US racing team built a car that currently leads the field. “Both drivers set the times with practically no effort in qualifying. Sometimes a car is so sharp that it is difficult to get the most out of it. But this car always seems to be fast. Our pilots feel good. The balance is right. There are no surprises. I hope it stays that way. ”
At least for the next three races in Bahrain, China and Azerbaijan, the hopes are high that the balance of power will not change. “I don't think the others will come with major upgrades in Bahrain. The upgrade war usually doesn't start until Barcelona, ”Steiner said optimistically.
And if the others add more, Haas will also have something in the quiver. While the engineers only had new parts ready in Montreal last year, further development should start a little earlier this year: “With the new rules, greater progress can be made through upgrades than in the previous year. That's why we're also planning new parts for Barcelona, ”explains Steiner. Then all you have to do is hold the wheels.