‘I doubt we’ll stay in third place for long’ – Steiner

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In the round-up: Haas team principal Guenther Steiner is realistic about the team’s strong position in the constructors championship after the first race of the season.

In brief

Steiner ‘enjoying the dream’ as Haas lie third

Kevin Magnussen’s fifth place in the Bahrain Grand Prix behind the Ferrari and Mercedes drivers propelled Haas to third in the constructors championship.

But heading into the second round of 2022, Steiner admits third in the points standings not a realistic goal for the team this year. “I don’t think that will stay for long,” he said. “But anyway I enjoyed the dream.”

He said team owner Gene Haas had been fully on-board with the decision to rehire Magnussen after dropping Nikita Mazepin.

“Sometimes you just have to stick, you make your decision and you stick with it, you don’t get distracted,” Steiner said. “And Gene is very good with that.

“Once it is talked through, if you say we’re going to do it, it’s just like to execute it. He trusted us to get Kevin back. You know, we spoke once about that and then it was: just do it.”

McLaren “focussed on learning” after Bahrain Grand Prix

After finishing 14th and 15th at the Bahrain Grand Prix, McLaren is treating the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix weekend as an opportunity for learning, says Daniel Ricciardo.

“The Bahrain Grand Prix was tough, and not how we wanted to start the season, but we’re putting together our plan to get higher up the grid,” Ricciardo explained. “We know we might not get there in one weekend, so we’re focused on learning as much as we can at every event. There’s a long season ahead of us with a lot of opportunities and that’s exactly the case in Saudi Arabia.

“We’re going to continue to work as a team and help each other to move forward, that’s why Formula 1 is a team sport. We’ll keep at it, keep our heads held high and do everything we can to progress at every weekend.”

Formula 2 drivers praise return to two-race format

Start, Bahrain, Formula 2, 2022
Formula 2 has dropped its three-race format
After the first round of the Formula 2 season, drivers praised a return to two races per weekend, rather than last year’s three.

“I think in general the format’s very positive for us as drivers,” said Jehan Daruvala. “We have a lot of rounds and the two races are more determined from qualifying so the drivers take a bit more risks without worrying about affecting the day after. So I think overall, it’s more entertaining for the fans and also for us drivers. We can respect each other, but also race really hard.”

Sprint race winner Richard Verschoor agreed. “For me, mainly what I like a lot is that we have much more rounds this season. I think coming from having one race less in the weekends, it’s more about qualifying now, but I think that’s fair.”

Liam Lawson agreed said the more balanced calendar would be important for drivers’ development. “It’s definitely a bonus for us, much smaller gaps throughout the year. We’re in the seats a lot more when you have obviously very short practice session like we do and you have been in the car for two months, it becomes quite difficult. Filling the year is is a lot nicer as well.”

Chambers confirmed alongside Chadwick at Jenner Racing

American driver Chloe Chambers has been confirmed as Jamie Chadwick’s team mate for the 2022 W Series season. Chambers, 17, comes to W Series from racing in US F4 and will be making her debut on home soil at the race supporting the Miami Grand Prix.

“Jamie Chadwick sets a benchmark both in and outside of the car with her professional approach, and she is someone I’ve looked up to for a long time,” said Chambers, who is six years Chadwick’s junior. “Caitlyn Jenner is one of the greatest athletes of all time, so I can’t think of two better people to work with and learn from at this stage in my career. It is difficult to overcome the perceptions of being a female in motorsport, but that drives me to continue to learn and win, and it’s fantastic to have great people in my corner.”

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Comment of the day

After track surface problems created a limited line around Texas Motor Speedway, Steven Robertson asks if there could be an alternative to tyres that lose so much rubber over a race distance?

The IndyCar race was superb but it did make me think about ‘marbles’, I wonder if it’s possible to develop a race tyre that doesn’t shed its outer layers across a track?

I notice in F1 that single race lines form due to this too, surely it’s got to be better for the environment having a tyre that stays in one piece.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Cacarella, James Newnham, Tommyc and George!

Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a motorsport and automotive journalist with a particular interest in hybrid systems, electrification, batteries and new fuel technologies....

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11 comments on “‘I doubt we’ll stay in third place for long’ – Steiner”

  1. COTD +1, I don’t care how we rationalise it, and yes the marbles do make passing more difficult, these tyres have to go.

    1. Marbles are an issue with every race tyre, and have been since the soft and very grippy tyres came along. They take an enormous battering.

      I’d like to see an end to marbles too, but I don’t see how it can be done. Luckily, there are plenty of people cleverer than me who’ll no doubt have some ideas.

      1. I think pirelli have well and truly proved that cannot make decent tyres. They came into the sport tasked with making degrading tyres (to ape the high deg seen at Canada 2010 on Bridgestones) but they’ve been asked to, or claimed to be trying to make longer wearing tyres for several years now and they’ve failed every time. The move to 18″ wheels was yet another golden opportunity to ditch the ridiculous thermal degradation property but they’ve failed. It’s hard to argue that this isn’t a fundamental flaw in the way they make race tyres. Bring back Michelin!

        1. but they’ve been asked to, or claimed to be trying to make longer wearing tyres for several years now and they’ve failed every time.

          Have they? Not so sure about that one.
          Anyway, F1 is hardly a stationary target, is it, @frood19… The tyre supplier (whoever it may be) has to build a tyre to F1’s demands for 10 unique cars that don’t even exist yet – each with their own individual handling characteristics, weight loadings and balance, geometry, etc. No matter which tyres are provided, the teams will just keep building cars that take 110% of the performance and endurance they can give. And then the tyre supplier will be blamed for it.

          It’s hard to argue that this isn’t a fundamental flaw in the way they make race tyres. Bring back Michelin

          It’s hard to argue that this is a characteristic that Pirelli alone struggle with.

          Remind me – who else is making tyres for modern F1 cars these days?
          Not Michelin, that’s for sure.
          Would love to see them do so, though, even if only so people can discover for themselves that all tyre manufacturers have to deal with the same laws of physics and chemistry.

        2. IfImnotverymuchmistaken
          23rd March 2022, 9:06

          I’m sure the easiest thing for Pirelli would be to make tires that would last an entire race without losing their properties, however, that’s not what the F1 tender required. F1 wanted specifically tires that last X amount of laps and then fall off the cliff drastically.
          It’s much harder to make tires with pre-calculated end of life, especially with 20-ish different tracks and their unique requirements.
          Pirelli, I think, is least to blame for the tire situation.

    2. I doubt it is possible to make tyres which don’t shed marbles at this level while maintaining even close to the current grip levels. Heck, I’ve seen significant quantities of marbles on many karting tracks I’ve been to, and they have been talked of in F1 since well before Pirelli came along.

  2. Steiner is right, the 3rd place should last only until next race, but that said it’s still really impressive, an incredible improvement from the car.

  3. Keeping P3 is indeed unlikely, but better to enjoy while this lasts.

    Mclaren has to improve from the opening event’s subpar showing & I’m sure they’ll eventually bounce back even if this takes a few events.

    The two-race format is better.
    The only thing I dislike about F2 this year is the unnecessary long gap preceding the final event.
    Why don’t they end their campaign in Monza & consequently race on Circuit Paul Ricard to keep the same race amount as this would spare everyone from boredom?

    COTD: IDK how doable, but perhaps easier said than done.

    1. @jerejj The Abu Dhabi GP contract includes a stipulation it gets the F2 finale as well as the F1 one – I’m sure they would try to end earlier, like F3, otherwise as it’s a problem for drivers negotiating future contracts that they don’t get their end result until so late.

      1. @hazelsouthwell OK. I didn’t know the same thing, i.e., season-ending right also applies to F2.

  4. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
    23rd March 2022, 14:42

    The Pitstop Boys are back with another banger:

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