Steiner: Haas’ 2021 upgrades won’t be ‘that great’

Date published: December 24 2020 - Mark Scott

Haas F1 testing 2020

Haas boss, Guenther Steiner, has said upgrades will be coming to their 2021 car – but he is not pinning too much hope on them making a big difference.

The American outfit amassed just three points during the 2020 season with only Williams preventing them from finishing bottom of the Formula 1 pile.

With purse strings significantly tightened during this unprecedented year, Haas chose against introducing any major upgrades to their car in order to save on costs.

But, in 2021, it appears there will be a little more budget for Haas to play with and, as a result, are ready to go on a more traditional development path.

However, Steiner is not expecting the planned upgrades to bring miraculous improvement and fire them up into the thick of the midfield battle.

“We are working hard on it,” Steiner said via Motorsport.com.

“It’s difficult to judge as we started developing maybe three or four months ago. It’s not that the other people developed a lot, it is just we did not have wide open development because we had to manage budgets and resources.

“We did very well when we had to manage resources and budgets, so I hope we can get back to those times.

“But next year for sure it will be difficult, because we are not developing from a car which is very competitive. The reality is we just find out when we go out there testing in Barcelona, and then in Australia when we do the first qualifying.

“We try to do our best, but I don’t want to make any promises on how great it will be, because I don’t think it will be that great. But as always, you try to do your best and you hope that you can make up some of what you lost before.”

There could well be more focus on what happens off the track with Haas rather than on it in 2021, even more so after announcing that Nikita Mazepin will be keeping his seat.

The Russian driver was subject of an internal investigation into a deleted social media video post which showed him groping a woman in the back of a car.

Haas say the “matter is dealt with”, but that decision was met with widespread disapproval from the Formula 1 community. The hashtag #WeSayNoToMazepin quickly trended on Twitter in the wake of the official statement.

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