Kevin Magnussen believes Haas “threw away some points” after a botched pit-stop ruined his Turkish Grand Prix.
The Dane had been running in the top 10 at Istanbul Park, on course to at least double the solitary World Championship point he had earned in his fourth and final season with the team.
But that prospect went out of the window when Magnussen had to stop his car at the end of the pits and be wheeled back by the mechanics when it was suspected one of the wheels had not been fitted properly.
He went on to finish 17th, two laps down, although the FIA did not impose any penalty on the team for sending Magnussen out of the pits with the car unsafe because it could not be ascertained whether or not the wheel was on properly at the time of release.
An FIA statement read: “The Haas team representative stated that the left rear mechanic was not sure if the tyre was secured properly and therefore they decided to stop the car out of an abundance of caution.
“The Stewards considered that with the available evidence, it was not possible to determine if the car was released in an unsafe condition.”
I think we lost a good chance of points today with the pit stop which is disappointing 👎🏼 Up until that, the pace was good and the race was going well. Unlucky! @HaasF1Team #StokEmballage #TurkishGP pic.twitter.com/eJJh8wokaN
— Kevin Magnussen (@KevinMagnussen) November 15, 2020
Magnussen himself could not give any further information, saying: “I don’t know what happened. One of the wheels didn’t come on properly but I haven’t seen yet. I had to stop the car after the pit-stop and get pulled back. I lost two laps and that was it really.”
But he was nevertheless disappointed that a rare opportunity in 2020 to score points had slipped by.
“It was going really well but the tyres wore down to the carcass and at that point, when the tyres got to that stage, we were really strong, so I think we threw away some points today,” added Magnussen.
Haas team principal Guenther Steiner added: “The race was going in the right direction for Kevin. We were solid there in the top 10, looking quite stable, and then we had a bad pit-stop again. That took us out of the points. From there on we just couldn’t do a lot.
“It was a very interesting and exciting race, but we weren’t part of it to get points. There’s nobody else to blame but ourselves. We need to fix this going forward.”