K-Mag craves ‘consistent’ FP3 after Friday woes in Saudi

Jamie Woodhouse
Kevin Magnussen's broken Haas towed to pits. Saudi Arabia March 2022.

Kevin Magnussen's broken Haas VF-22 is towed back to the team's garage. Saudi Arabia March 2022.

Haas’ Kevin Magnussen wants a smooth FP3 after being blighted by reliability issues in Friday practice at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

The Danish racer was in dreamland after finishing P5 at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, his first contest back in Formula 1, but it took only a couple of installation laps in Saudi Arabia for the buzz to fade.

Magnussen spent the rest of FP1 stuck in the garage with repair work under way on the Haas to fix a hydraulic leak, while further problems then forced him to stop on track in FP2, marking a  premature end to his day.

So having lost a huge amount of track time at a venue where he has not raced before, Magnussen very much hopes to avoid any further setbacks in the final practice session before qualifying.

“It wasn’t ideal to get the limited running but on the laps I did have, the car didn’t feel too bad,” he is quoted as saying by the Haas website.

“I’m just hoping for a consistent FP3 tomorrow – get some more laps in, then qualifying and then we can use some of Mick [Schumacher’s] experience on the long runs to get ready for the race.”

Nonetheless, from the laps he did manage to pump in, Magnussen is impressed with the Jeddah Corniche Circuit.

“It’s a great track, super high-speed and there’s a lot of action, so I’m looking forward to more running tomorrow,” he said.

As for the other side of the Haas garage, Schumacher declared “good things were learned” in Friday practice, so now he says the challenge is to extract all of the performance available from the VF-22 when it counts in qualifying and the race.

“Good things were learned,” he stated.

“Obviously, it was unfortunate not both cars were able to run, so hopefully that will get better in the future. I think overall, we know what we have as a package and it’s up to us now to put it all together.”

 

Haas team principal Guenther Steiner is hopeful the team can rebound on Saturday, explaining that while “too many technical issues” held Magnussen back, the team are confident of finding a fix.

“Not the perfect day but I think we can recoup tomorrow if we have a good day – it’s just that it could have gone better,” said Steiner.

“Kevin had too many technical issues with the car but we are working on it and will sort them out. Mick did a good, solid job.”