British Grand Prix – Haas will run Romain Grosjean’s car in Australia-spec this weekend, in a bid to get on top of their ongoing tyre issues.
With Haas falling down the order again last time out in Austria, the team have decided to run a direct comparison of two specifications of their setups in order to figure out where they’ve gone wrong.
Romain Grosjean will drive this weekend with the specification used at the season opener in Australia, while teammate Kevin Magnussen will use the latest specification rolled out over the recent races. This will allow the team to get three days of direct comparison data.
Grosjean confirmed that the changes will include mostly aerodynamic parts like the floor, nose, endplates, turning vanes and wings. Stating that he found the more recent updates akin to ‘driving in the rain, all the time’, he said: “When we introduced the update I wasn’t fully convinced about it in Spain.”
“But the data suggested it was good, so we put it on, and we kept going. But for a few races I really felt better with the initial package so I wanted to come back in terms of feeling. Obviously the last two races in terms of performance have proven to us that we need to understand a bit more what’s happening. Early in the year, we had very good qualifying, and then the race pace was not as good.”
“I think I really extracted the best of it out of the last three races, and Kevin has got the upper hand in qualifying but, in the race completely the opposite, I almost lapped him twice – but it’s P16.”
Acknowledging the odd decision to revert back to a spec from months ago in a sport that normally never looks back, he said that Guenther Steiner allowed the decision after Austria’ dismal results from a relatively strong starting position:
“We’ve got two cars running two different packages, to get as much information as we can in terms of sensors. If that’s any correlation in the fact that we cannot go as fast as we want, that’s what we want to find out.”
There won’t be any possibility of any further changes if Grosjean finds the old spec is too slow, as there are permanent settings required for this analysis: “It’s decided for the weekend. The change is too big, it involves some chassis moulding, so we’ve got to run it for the weekend.”