Podium dreams stirring at Haas after fast start

Andy Hone/Motorsport Images

Podium dreams stirring at Haas after fast start

Formula 1

Podium dreams stirring at Haas after fast start

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Haas team principal Guenther Steiner hopes his team is prepared to take its chance if a podium opportunity opens up in 2022.

Eight of the 10 teams finished on the podium last season, with only Haas and Alfa Romeo failing to do so. Although Alfa Romeo had two top-eight finishes in 2021, Haas failed to score but has started the new season in an extremely competitive position, with Kevin Magnussen finishing fifth in Bahrain. Ahead of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Steiner says it’s just good to be in the conversation about potential podium results.

“Absolutely and to be there, people speak about the podium, I hope we are there at the right time at the right place,” Steiner said. “I don’t know if we ever get this lucky but if it arises, hopefully we are there — there were a few smaller teams in the last years getting podiums and we didn’t expect it. If there is an opportunity, maybe we can take it.”

Magnussen (pictured above, with Steiner) says Haas is in the best position to benefit from any issues for the top three teams and has to be a target if it maintains its impressive early form, although he admits such a result would be a bonus.

“I mean, if you’re always like just behind the top teams — which I guess is the best you can hope for unless you’re in a Merc/Ferrari/Red Bull — if you’re right there then you’re the first one to get that podium if stuff happens,” Magnussen said. “I don’t see us driving onto the podium on pace anytime soon but I could kind of expect us to be in the position we were in Bahrain, leading the midfield — you’d hope we can do that more often and keeping that level, that’s got to be the target.

“If you’re there, you’re the first one to receive that podium if you have that lucky day where a lot of people have problems — which has happened before — or there’s a red flag at the right time on a track that’s hard to overtake, or something like that.

“That’s something I’m dreaming about. I’m not expecting it — as I said I don’t think we have the pace to be driving onto the podium — but I am dreaming about that podium.”

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