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Haas retains Grosjean and Magnussen

NEWS STORY
19/09/2019

Haas will contest the 2020 F1 season with a retained driver line-up, as Romain Grosjean continues with Kevin Magnussen.

Grosjean and Magnussen will be partnered together at the American outfit for a fourth straight year as the team prepares for its fifth season in Formula One.

The decision to retain Grosjean will come as a surprise to many, not least Nico Hulkenberg who had been linked with the seat alongside, and was, according to team boss, Guenther Steiner, the only other driver under consideration.

Grosjean joined at the inception of the squad in 2016 with Magnussen signing on from 2017. The duo has combined to score a total of 166 points since pairing together and last season their joint efforts helped Haas to finish fifth overall in the Constructors' Championship with 93 points - the Kannapolis-based outfit's best placing to-date.

"Experience, and the need for it, has been one of the cornerstones of Haas, and with Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen racing for the team in 2020, we continue to have a driver line-up that offers us a solid platform to continue our growth," said team boss, Guenther Steiner.

"Their understanding of how we work as a team, and our knowledge of what they can deliver behind the wheel, gives us a valued continuity and a strong foundation to keep building our team around. It's been a tough year for us in 2019 with the fluctuation in performance of the VF-19, but our ability to tap into our combined experiences will help us learn, improve, and move forward as a unit in 2020."

2019 has proved to be a testing campaign for Haas, with Grosjean and Magnussen scoring just 26 points heading into this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix - the team currently placed ninth in the standings with seven rounds remaining.

Their first season together in 2017 saw the pair amass 47 points - scoring the team's first double-points finishes along the way in Monaco and Japan.

This allowed the team to equal its eighth-place finish in the championship from its debut season in 2016. Fifth in the points followed in 2018 including the squad's best overall race finish at the Austrian Grand Prix, with Grosjean taking the chequered flag fourth followed by Magnussen in fifth.

Grosjean's fifth consecutive season with Haas will mark the 33-year-old Frenchman's ninth full-time season in F1. With 10 career podium finishes to his credit and a veteran of 157 Grand Prix starts, Grosjean scored all 29 points for Haas F1 Team in its inaugural 2016 season and has totalled 102 of the team's overall points tally of 195.

"I've always stated that it was my desire to remain with Haas and keep building on the team's accomplishments," said Grosjean. "Having been here since the very beginning and seen the work both Gene Haas and Guenther Steiner put into the team to make it competitive, I'm naturally very happy to continue to be a part of that. To finish fifth in the constructors' championship last season in only the team's third year of competing was something very special. We've had our challenges this season, but we'll use both the experience of last year and this year to move forward into 2020. I'm looking forward to working with Kevin and the whole team and continuing our journey together."

Magnussen finished a career-best ninth in the Drivers' Championship in 2018, scoring 56 points from the team's haul of 93. The 26-year-old from Denmark joined Haas in 2017 after competing for McLaren and Renault in 2014 and 2016 respectively. Having found a home with the American outfit, Magnussen has scored 93 of his career tally of 155 points with Haas.

"I've had the comfort of knowing I'd be continuing with the team in 2020 and that's very much been a positive throughout what's often been a difficult 2019 season," siad the Dane. "Knowing we can work to make things better, improve our understanding of our situation, and get back to the level of competitiveness we showed last season - these are the things that excite me about 2020. We're a team full of racers, led at the top by Gene Haas and Guenther Steiner. Nobody's satisfied with how the 2019 season has played out, but the determination to turn things around is very much in evidence. I'm grateful the team have always believed in me and what I can bring to the table. We share a common goal and together with Romain, I'll be giving it my all on-track for the remainder of this season and into 2020."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by vins0n, 20/09/2019 14:18

"This is clearly a bid to keep Steiner's starring role on Netflix. "

Rating: Positive (1)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by C5, 19/09/2019 18:12

"Haas sure have incredible capacity for making suboptimal decisions. No sign of that trend breaking soon..."

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3. Posted by Barslug, 19/09/2019 15:37

"Well it looks like Hass has no intention of bettering themselves. The decision to retain Grosjean over any number of better drivers tells me they plan to stay stagnant or drop down the order. I really wanted to be able to cheer on my home team but this makes it impossible. I hope they slam their collective heads into the wall every time Grosjean makes yet another idiotic mistake. RIP Hass. "

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4. Posted by Fambank, 19/09/2019 10:47

"I just hope Steiner keeps his mouth shut from now on, "when things don't go to plan".

You get what you bargained for."

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