Formula 1 Racing

Haas are “back to being a normal team again” says Steiner · RaceFans

Nico Hulkenberg, Haas, Bahrain International Circuit, 2023

Haas team principal Guenther Steiner says that his team are finally back to being a “normal” team in terms of their car development plans for the 2023 season.

Haas effectively sacrificed their 2021 season, choosing to forgo all development on their car for that season to prioritise design of their 2022 car and the new technical regulations. After finishing last in the constructors’ championship that season with no points, Haas scored points in the first race of 2022 and eventually claimed eighth place in the standings by the end of the year.

Despite benefiting from focusing on development of their 2022 car, Haas only had limited upgrades throughout the season, with only one major package introduced before the summer break. Steiner says the team have the capacity to bring regular updates to their VF-23 this year.

“As I say to my guys now, whatever happens here, how we perform, we are now back to being a normal team – whatever ‘normal’ means – because we just keep on developing,” Steiner explained to media including RaceFans.

“In 2021 obviously there was no development, so we cannot even begin to talk. I think they did a very good job in 2021 to get the 2022 car out, but everything was done in a hurry and we had to fix a lot of problems. While this year, they are now growing together as a team and they work much better.

“So this year, it’s normal like any other team. If we are not where we are, [it’s] ‘where is our problem? What do we need to develop? Let’s get on with it’. We have got the budget cap, so we can do it.

“Going into the future, I think we will find a little bit later in the season – not late in the season, but in the middle of the season – where we want to get [to], where our weaknesses are after the start of the season and then to address it. Whether we need to make the team stronger and how are we going to do that.”

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While Steiner says that the team plan to introduce new parts to their car throughout the season, the team will only commit to manufacturing the parts if they are convinced they will provide a material boost to performance.

“Upgrades are coming all over the season,” he said. “We’ve got a good plan in place.

“I don’t say exactly when it is coming, because if you do development and they don’t give you what you target, you are not going to produce the upgrades because that’s a waste of money. We wait until the results. But there are…

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