Formula 1 has had a heightened presence in America in recent seasons thanks to the revival of the U.S. Grand Prix and the emergence of new American team Haas. The team enjoyed their best season yet with fifth in the Constructors’ Championship in 2018, but struggled in the last two seasons.
|First F1 Appearance||2016 Australian Grand Prix|
Established in April 2014, by NASCAR team co-owner Gene Haas, the team was originally planning to make its début in the 2015 season, but later deferred their entry until the next season. Following the collapse of the Marussia team, Haas purchased the team’s base in Banbury, to compliment their American base in Kannapolis, North Carolina. The team benefits from a close working relationship with Ferrari, who supply them with engines and additional support.
Haas announced Romain Grosjean as their lead driver in September 2015, before announcing at the 2015 Mexican Grand Prix that Esteban Gutierrez would join him. Their first race – the 2016 Australian Grand Prix – was quite extraordinary. While Esteban Gutierrez was involved in a large accident with Fernando Alonso, Romain Grosjean finished a fantastic sixth – thus making Haas the first team to score points on début since Toyota in 2002. At the next round, Grosjean bettered that and scored a fifth place finish. Haas have never finished as high as that again, and suffered a number of technical niggles throughout 2016. Though Grosjean did continue to score points throughout their maiden season, Gutierrez struggled on his way to five frustrating 11th place finishes before being dropped by the team at the end of 2016. They finished a respectable eighth in the standings in their first year in the sport.
Kevin Magnussen joined the team for 2017, and his points perhaps masked the team’s slip in performance. Magnussen scored nineteen points over 2017, compared to Guiterrez’s zero in 2016. Overall, the team scored eighteen more points than in 2016, so it’s questionable whether those extra points were down to a better car or a better driver line-up. It was, at times, a difficult sophomore season, but the team seemed to be more at grasp with their car. The opening round of the season was one of the highlights, as Grosjean scored the team’s best ever qualifying result with sixth place, while Brazil was a low point, with both drivers crashing through their own errors on the first lap.
Retaining the same driver line-up, Haas had an encouraging start to their 2018 season, running fourth and fifth in the Australian Grand Prix. However, issues at the pit-stops saw both cars stop on the circuit, costing the team 22 points. Those 22 points could have been very valuable indeed for Haas in their tight battle for fourth in the Constructors’ Championship with Renault. Nevertheless, fifth overall showed F1’s newest team’s steady progress. Despite his early season struggles, Romain Grosjean recorded the team’s best result of the year, and their best so far in the sport, with fourth place in the Austrian Grand Prix.
HAAS IN 2019
Haas endured their worst season to date in 2019. While the opening race of the season gave hope for another strong campaign for Haas, with both cars reaching Q3 and Kevin Magnussen finishing sixth, that turned out to be their best result of the year. While the drivers reached Q3 at all but one of the first five races of the season, they were unable to convert these into points-scoring races.
The Spanish and German Grands Prix were the only times that both cars finished inside the top ten, with Grosjean’s tenth place in Monaco and Magnussen’s ninth in Russia being their only other points scoring appearances. Magnussen’s ninth in Russia was the only time they scored in the second half of the season as they slipped down to ninth in the championship and scored a total of only 28 points – one less than they scored in their maiden season.
Magnussen says that their problems were clear from the second race of the season, but the team never got on top of them for the rest of the year. A switch between multiple specifications complicated matters as Haas searched for a solution to their largely unpredictable problems. And it didn’t help that their line-up kept crashing with each other during the mid-season. That coupled with their ongoing off-track shenanigans with off-and-on-and-off again title sponsor made it a rather unenjoyable season for the American squad. Read more: Haas’ 2019 F1 Season In Stats.
HAAS IN 2020
It was not a golden year for Haas in 2020, with the team scoring only three points. Romain Grosjean brought home the team’s best result of the year with ninth place at the Eifel Grand Prix, while Kevin Magnussen finished tenth at the Hungarian Grand Prix. The team never qualified above fourteenth position this year, and regularly recorded double Q1 exits.
Both Grosjean and Magnussen announced that they would be departing the team, and the sport, prior to the end of the 2020 season. Grosjean’s season came to an early end with an horrific crash on the opening lap of the Bahrain Grand Prix. The Frenchman was able to escape what remained of his burning car, receiving burns to his hands. Read more: Haas’ 2020 F1 Season In Stats.
Haas have opted for an all-new driver line-up for 2021. 2020 F2 Champion Mick Schumacher will partner Russian driver Nikita Mazepin at the team next season. Mazepin, who collected nearly enough points for a race ban in F2 in 2020, has already caused controversy with a series of posts on social media – the latest of which was labelled “abhorrent” in a statement by the Haas team. The team have since reaffirmed his position at the team, despite considerable backlash to his signing. Will Haas be able to score more points with their 2021 rookie line-up?
HAAS’ RECENT F1 HISTORY
|2016||8th (29 points)||0||0||Romain Grosjean, Esteban Gutierrez|
|2017||8th (47 points)||0||0||Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen|
|2018||5th (93 points)||0||0||Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen|
|2019||9th (28 points)||0||0||Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen|
|2020||9th (3 points)||0||0||Romain Grosjean, Kevin Magnussen, Pietro Fittipaldi|