Austrian Grand Prix – Both of the Haas drivers were left licking their wounds after falling to the back of pack throughout Sunday’s race at the Red Bull Ring.
The Haas drivers started Sunday’s race from P10 and P11 with Magnussen and Grosjean respectively, with the Danish driver proving one of the stars of Saturday’s qualifying session.
This was after Magnussen put in a late Q3 time to initially qualify in P5 but a gearbox change penalty moved him back to P10 and starting on the Soft tyre. Grosjean, who had been knocked out in Q2, started from P11 on the Mediums.
However, that was as good as it got for either driver. Magnussen was given a drive through penalty shortly after the race start due to moving before the red lights went out to start the race. Falling down to P15 by the time of his pitstop to ditch the Soft tyres and swap to the Hards, the planned one stop didn’t work out either as he required a second stop to change back to Softs again towards the end of the race. He finished P19.
Having been on top of the world after Saturday’s great qualifying performance, a disconsolate Magnussen said he is at a loss to explain where the team’s pace disappeared to: “We didn’t have any pace today in the race after qualifying P5 yesterday. It’s disappointing after a very good day on Saturday. It’s strange, and very frustrating. Nothing was really working, it felt pretty hopeless. It’s really confusing.”
Grosjean, starting from P11, fell down to P15 on the opening lap and never really recovered from there. Employing a one-stop strategy with a change from the Mediums to the Hards at half distance meant he came home in P16: “It’s a tough one, it’s really hard to understand where the grip is going, and how we can make the car go faster. I had no grip on those first few laps, then just no pace in the race. It’s been a very difficult afternoon with no balance, I was fighting the car as hard as I could. We’re in a very difficult situation. We’ll work on it, we’ll find it, it may take some time. I’m sure our guys have got the resources to get on top of our issues. There’s obviously just something that we’re not doing quite right.”
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