Haas will not have a spare chassis at the Australian Grand Prix following Mick Schumacher’s heavy crash in Jeddah.
Schumacher crashed late in Q2 and had to be taken to hospital for precautionary scans, while the significant damage meant Haas took the decision to withdrawn him from the race to protect the car for Melbourne. The chassis has since been sent back to the team’s factory in the UK, meaning Schumacher will use the spare this weekend and there will be no back-up for either driver.
“The situation with spare parts is expected on race number two after a big crash,” Haas team principal Guenther Steiner said. “We have everything, but we have no abundance of spare parts.
“The next question is how is the spare chassis? We haven’t got one because we have sent it back to Europe at the beginning of the week, so we’ll get it ready for Imola. We had to bring it here because of customs formalities — it had to enter here and then it could be shipped back to Europe from here and it’s on its way back now.”
Despite knowing a damaged chassis for either driver would then rule them out of the rest of the Melbourne weekend, Steiner says he won’t be asking Schumacher and Kevin Magnussen to be careful when they hit the track.
“I think we cannot approach differently. The drivers are aware of the situation that there is no spare chassis but that can happen sometimes. I’m not panicking and if something happens, we will deal with it as it comes along. You cannot say ‘go out there and drive slowly’ — that doesn’t make sense, just like ‘don’t take extra risks if you don’t have to.’”
Schumacher says he won’t change his approach despite the lack of a spare chassis, putting his crash in Jeddah partly down to car setup making the Haas more sensitive to a curb than others.
“No, I think that everything is going to be just fine,” Schumacher said. “We’ll be quick, hopefully, and we for sure won’t need that spare one.
“Obviously you try your best not to crash but you also want to go as quick as you can. We were on a good lap — we were on the final run of Q2 and to be able to get into Q3 you had to try something and we did. The curb was just too high for the car and we saw it with Fernando (Alonso) and also Esteban (Ocon), that it happened nearly for them, so I guess it’s something we will have to review.”