Kevin Magnussen rues first-corner damage that made him ‘slow’ at Monza

Thomas Maher
Haas' Kevin Magnussen at the Italian Grand Prix. Monza, September 2022.

Kevin Magnussen said the damage his car sustained at the first chicane of the Italian Grand Prix was “too much” for him to achieve a positive result.

The Dane’s team boss Guenther Steiner believes his two Haas drivers were “done over” during the race at Monza.

Steiner was critical about the race officiating after Magnussen was given a five-second time penalty, as well as a penalty point on his superlicence, for a first-lap incident.

Heading into Turn 1, Magnussen was bumped from behind by Valtteri Bottas as part of a chain reaction and took to the escape area, coming out ahead of Nicholas Latifi’s Williams. While Latifi got back past Magnussen, the officials felt Magnussen had not ceded the place and forced Latifi to race him.

That triggered the penalty for Magnussen, who explained afterwards he had picked up damage during the fracas at the chicane.

I had contact at the beginning of the race in Turn 1 – I got hit from behind and the diffuser got damaged,” he said, having come home in 16th place.

“From there, we were slow. The damage was too much and I don’t know exactly the impact it would have had, but nonetheless it wasn’t a great day. You always hope the next race will be better. Singapore looks more suitable for our car, so I’m looking forward to it.”

Mick Schumacher had a tough weekend throughout after missing most of practice – sitting out FP1 as Antonio Giovinazzi took his car before encountering several technical problems that stymied his on-track time.

Kevin Magnussen putting on his HANS ahead of a grand prix. Netherlands September 2022

Schumacher finished in 12th place at the end having had a strong recovery drive from the back of the grid.

“Considering I haven’t really driven much this weekend and had a difficult qualifying, to then actually be close to the points – I think mentally already being in the points – it was a strong recovery,” he explained, having pulled off an eye-opening overtake on Williams’ Nicholas Latifi during a tense battle.

“He came by like a rocket ship!” said Schumacher after Latifi re-passed him through Curva Grande before the Haas driver won out into the first Lesmo.

“The Williams was super-quick on the straights, even pulling away in the DRS, so I had to get the move done somehow and it was a decent one,” he said.

“Overall, we are really happy about the performance we’ve shown and we really were on a good course as everyone else was struggling on their tyres and we were on very good tyres.”

Steiner did not hold back as he spoke to media after the race, saying he felt the penalty given to Magnussen was not justified.

“The thing about this race is basically we got done by the officials,” he commented.

“Kevin had an incident at the start where he got shoved off and his diffuser was damaged. He got a penalty because he couldn’t stay on the racing line, but with the rear wheels up it’s difficult to stay on the racing line – I don’t think the penalty is appropriate.”

The Safety Car ending also drew Steiner’s ire, saying: “I don’t think I need to discuss the end of the race because what happened, happened and it wasn’t handled how it should have been.

“Elsewhere, Mick did a fantastic job to get P12 considering his lack of time on track this weekend and our expected pace at this circuit.”