Haas F1 team principal Guenther Steiner says the priority for the team after the summer break will be to ensure that it understands its car performance problems enough to avoid a repeat in 2020.
Haas has had a very quick car on a number of occasions this year, making regular Q3 appearances earlier in the season. However, the team has often struggled to translate that into race results, notably having difficulty getting its tires to perform on Sundays and often dropping back through the field as a consequence.
“We knew that we had a lot of work to do and we know that for the rest of the season,” Steiner said. “We need to learn to manage the cars and the tires better. It’s this up and down. If you have a bad car you have a big problem and you’d think a good car with tire problems would be smaller; but no, it’s even bigger because it is somewhere and we just need to find it. It is difficult.
“A realistic target result-wise I have no idea, but to get as much of an understanding as possible between the tire and the car. The car we have influence on, obviously, but the tire, if that is ruling what your aero does then we can’t do a lot about it. And to find that out is difficult because we haven’t got another tire to test on with something.
“(We need) to get a good understanding so we are not falling into this trap next year. But again the tire will change next year, because it was so good this year so they change it next year.”
Although Steiner believes Haas is getting a better understanding of its issues as the season goes on, he said it’s an even bigger challenge to find and work on solutions.
“I think we get closer and closer to understanding more, but the thing is you get more and more data and to put that into ‘getting it’ always is difficult,” he said. “You get an understanding but then you need to fix it, which is not easy. But the first thing is to understand what is happening — some of it we understand, but some of it is so random.”