Hopeful Haas sees ‘silver lining’ to dismal 2019 campaign

November 29, 2019 0 By JohnValbyNation

Haas has endured a depressing season, marked by the endless and perplexing tyre management issues impacting its 2019 contender. But team boss Guenther Steiner sees a silver lining to it all for 2020.

Haas’ campaign has been a story of inconsistent performances, with a strong showing in qualifying often followed by a sudden and inexplicable drop in pace on race day.

A quest to debunk the VF19’s mysteries saw the team run different aero programmes for its drivers in the first part of the season. To no avail unfortunately as Haas’ charger retained its puzzling symptoms.

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“It was obviously a tough year for us in our fourth season,” Steiner said ahead of this week’s season finale in Abu Dhabi.

“You learn and, overall, we’re pretty strong anyway. We had to learn some lessons to get better. Next year will be a new book and, hopefully, we go back to the kind of performances we had in 2018.

Challenged by its setbacks and struggles this year, Haas as a whole has been fortified, both in terms of its troops learning to deal with adversity and with regard to its engineers learning what to avoid in the future.

In that sense, the current season has provided a silver lining according to Steiner.

©Haas

“Yes, I would say there is a silver lining,” said the Italian. “We started to react during the summer break to work on the 2020 car – to try to avoid the mistakes we’ve made this year.

“We don’t want to repeat them. We’re just moving forward, analyzing and working hard on the 2020 car.”

In the context of next year’s whopping 22-race schedule, F1 has shortened the duration of pre-season testing at Barcelona. Will this have an impact on the team?

“For sure it will be tough next year having 22 races for the first time,” admitted Steiner.

“I’m sure we’ll learn some lessons there – how to deal with things better.

“On the other side, the shorter winter testing and then no in-season testing – that will help a little bit with having more races. It’s a bit less travel and less work for testing.

“The team will be challenged a lot. Team personnel will be at a limit.”

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