Australian GP: Qualifying team notes - Haas


MoneyGram Haas F1 Team drivers Nico Hulkenberg and Kevin Magnussen qualified 10th and 14th respectively for the Australian Grand Prix, Round 3 of the 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.

Qualifying kicked off under a cloudy sky in Melbourne but the threat of rain was rated at only 19 percent. That didn't prevent early traffic in Q1 as the field exited the pits to get banker laps in. Nico Hulkenberg and Kevin Magnussen were armed with two brand new sets of Pirelli P Zero Red softs to open their accounts and both used them wisely to progress into Q2 as part of the top-15 drivers moving on. Hulkenberg's fastest lap of 1:18.029 placed him into Q2 in P9 while Magnussen's best of 1:18.159 saw the Dane directly behind his teammate in P10.

Both drivers once again had two new sets of soft rubber at their disposal as they aimed to get into the top-10 and Q3. Each driver set their fastest lap on set two - Hulkenberg successfully earning a spot in final qualifying courtesy of a flying lap of 1:17.412 - the German with the fourth fastest lap time in Q2. Magnussen's day came to an end with a 1:18.129 effort netting P14 on the timesheet.

Q3 saw Hulkenberg run a used set of soft tires to start before he swapped onto his final set of brand new softs for one last timed attack - a 1:17.735 earning P10 on the grid for Sunday's 58-lap race.

Kevin Magnussen: "The car was good but I messed up the lap when it counted unfortunately, so P14. It's not too far away from the top 10 so there's still hope for tomorrow and Nico has shown what the car can do. It's a shame on my side but I'm still looking forward to the race - we can fight."

Nico Hulkenberg: "It was definitely a positive qualifying and Q2 was especially very good. In Q3, I only had one new set of tires when some others maybe had two, but either way it wasn't quite there. I wasn't able to produce a lap like in Q2 but nevertheless, another top 10 finish which is positive and we'll take that into tomorrow. I'm feeling pretty confident and feeling good about the race."

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal: "I'm unhappy and happy today. There could've been more for us today because on the last run with Nico it wasn't an ideal lap, down to a few circumstances. There was no need for Hamilton to be so close to Nico at the start of his last fast lap - and trying to get past him - as Lewis wasn't on a fast lap. Then again, I'm happy because tomorrow we start P10 and P14 and everything seems to be going to plan and I think our race pace is good. Tomorrow, the mission is to get points."

Check out our Saturday gallery from Melbourne here.

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Published: 01/04/2023
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