Haas confident about recapturing old form

Haas will go into 2022 expecting to reclaim the level of competitiveness that took it to fifth in the 2018 constructors’ championship, according to team principal Guenther Steiner.

After a poor end to 2019, 2020 was a difficult season for Haas, which opted against developing its car due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year it has gone for a similar approach, and put its focus on giving experience to a pair of rookie drivers rather than heavily developing a car ahead of the new technical regulations that will arrive in 2022. But despite such a run of tough seasons and both Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin looking a long way from scoring points, Steiner believes the team can bounce back next year.

“I think we are in a good position,” Steiner said. “You are never in a comfortable position, yo always want more, because the day you don’t want more you should change (your) job in my opinion, especially in the competitive environment that Formula 1 is. I think we are in a good place, (but) we can always do better.

“The team is now back where we were in ’16. ’17, ’18 in technical terms with Simone Resta leading the technical group. We have got a leader there now again, and I see good progress there.

“The race team was always pretty good, we have never seen any big weaknesses. So I’m pretty hopeful and confident that we will get back to our old form.”

Steiner believes new sponsors have been attracted to Haas because of that ambition and expectation for a more competitive team when new regulations are introduced next year.

“I’m very thankful to them that they believe in our plan,” he said. “Our plan is not to stay where we are. We explained our strategy, and there are some people who like to take on a challenge.

“If you see some of our partners, they are relatively new companies and they believe that we can do better. They want to come in at the start of something good, and that is why they joined. But it’s not even easy for the teams at the front to find sponsors, so every sponsor you find is always good to have. And to have people believe in our future is also good, because that’s the only thing we can describe to them.

“We have got a good future in front of us, we have got two young drivers and we have been fifth in 2018 and that is what we want to do again. That is how we get these sponsors.”