Haas’ Kevin Magnussen believes the US outfit is well-armed to remain among F1’s mid-field front-runners, insisting he sees no reason for the team’s performance to suddenly drop off.
Haas has taken a significant step forward this season with its VF-18 car, performing as ‘best of the rest’ at the outset in Melbourne before an unfortunate double pitstop blunder wreaked havoc on its race result.
Magnussen raced in the points in Bahrain and Shanghai however, confirming his mount’s speed and the team’s dark horse status for 2018.
Despite the fierce challenge offered by its direct rivals, the Dane is confident Haas can hold its own in the upcoming races.
Magnussen has stability at Haas, and hopes to keep it for 2019
“It is hard to say and difficult to predict the future but I don’t see any reasons why we would suddenly fall back massively,” Magnussen said.
“Sometimes you do get these surprises so hopefully we won’t get it.
“I think we’ve learnt since last year about the tyres and we have a more consistent car this year but we are still not perfect so we could still see things we need to improve.
“That is probably never going to change.”
The squad’s VF-18 – the subject of a fair amount of controversy for its close resemblance to the car fielded by Ferrari, Haas’ technical partner – has proven to be an overall well-balanced design, but also one that efficiently exploits its tyres, the main weakness of last year’s VF-17.
“Yes, I think because our car is consistent that was our weakness from last year that we had a car that sometimes you could manage to get in the window and it would work really well, he said.
“This year it seems like it is a little easier even at the beginning of the weekend when we haven’t sorted the tyres out perfectly we are still up there.
“I feel we have a better starting point than we had last year but we still need to improve.”
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