Romain Grosjean has claimed that having to use old parts on their cars is among several factors reducing Haas’ competitiveness this season.
Haas have collected only one World Championship point so far this year and even then it was the result of an inspired strategy decision during the formation lap for the Hungarian Grand Prix, when they pitted Kevin Magnussen and Grosjean to fit slick tyres on a drying track.
The radio call was actually illegal and a time penalty was issued, but it was not enough to drop Magnussen out of the points and he ended up in P10.
Nevertheless, Haas have otherwise been uncompetitive for much of the campaign and not helped by the decision not to upgrade the VF-20 during a whistle-stop season that has already featured three triple-headers, with the team’s focus clearly on 2021 and 2022.
A Ferrari engine that lacks the performance of its Mercedes, Honda and Renault rivals has also affected Haas’ prospects, while Grosjean has thrown another factor into the mix – a lack of available new components.
“We had the crash at Mugello where the car was totally damaged and we had to change a lot of parts, and on the Friday of the Russian Grand Prix some were not working as they should have been so we changed them,” said the Frenchman, quoted by Motorsport Week.
“We are not developing the car, so the more it goes [on] the more likely it is we go backwards if others are developing. But we are going in a nice place to set it up.
“What happens is we are running less often new parts than we would in a normal year and therefore when you have a crash, the parts that were your best are destroyed.
“Then you go for the second best and so on and so on, so I guess that can explain a little bit of the inconsistency so far.”
Grosjean pointed to Magnussen struggling at the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, after suffering floor damage in a first-lap crash at the British Grand Prix, as further justification.
“Kevin had one [race] at Silverstone when he was miles off,” added Grosjean. “I felt the same on Friday in Russia.
“Set-up wise and so on we are getting the hang of it and doing a great job. But bear in mind this is the same car that was at winter testing in Barcelona.”