Japanese GP: Qualifying team notes - Haas


MoneyGram Haas F1 Team drivers Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg qualified 15th and 18th respectively for the Japanese Grand Prix, Round 17 of the 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.

Nico Hulkenberg was knocked out of qualifying at the end of Q1 - with only the top-15 progressing. The German had an earlier lap time deleted for exceeding track limits. With a second set of Pirelli P Zero Red tires bolted on Hulkenberg clocked a best lap of 1:31.299 to classify P18. Magnussen fared better advancing to Q2 in P15 thanks to his second flying run of 1:30.976.

With just one set of new softs available in Q2 Magnussen held station in the garage until late in the session. The Dane set a 1:30.665 to see his qualifying attempt end in P15.

Kevin Magnussen: "I'm happy that we got the best out of it. P15, we want to be better than that, but we knew coming into this weekend it was going to be one of the worst tracks for us, and we know our car is stronger in qualifying than it is in the race. Being P15, you know what's coming tomorrow, most likely. I feel I've made some improvements in terms of how I drive this car and I feel like I'm getting more out of it, so at least that work has paid off."

Nico Hulkenberg: "It was a strange one. The first lap obviously got deleted for track limits. The second lap felt very good in sector one, but then in sector two I tried to find time, but instead I lost some. It's a weird sensation, there were no mistakes, so I need to look into what happened and why we couldn't find more time. Degradation is high for everyone, but it's also high for us. It's going to be a battle tomorrow, so we need to see what we can do strategy-wise to help ourselves."

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal: "It was as expected. We knew this was a track that doesn't suit us, and I think we did the best we could. In the end, we need to be realistic at the moment about what's possible and what is not. Hopefully tomorrow we can get the tires to work a little bit longer, which is always our weak point, and then there is still opportunity there. So as always, we keep on pushing."

Check out our Saturday gallery from Suzuka here.

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Published: 23/09/2023
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