Haas' plan to avoid 2018 Australian GP pit disaster
Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has ordered extra pit-stop practice during pre-season in a bid to avoid a repeat of the double DNF which marred their Australian Grand Prix a year ago. Haas return to Melbourne this week with ambitions of taking the fight to Formula 1's midfield.
Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean were set for fourth and fifth place respectively at Albert Park a year ago, but both retired in the space of a few laps after shedding wheels within metres of taking a service.
With the midfield set to be even more tightly contested this year, Steiner says Haas have been working to eliminate all errors.
"We obviously haven't forgotten last year's pit stops in Australia, which went wrong," Steiner said.
"This year we've put a lot of emphasis on arriving there prepared. We brought a 2018 car to our car build in Italy so we could train every day and work on pit stops.
"We did the same in Barcelona, as the current car is not always available for pit stop practice when you test. Every day the whole crew practiced around 10 to 12 pit stops a day."
Haas suffered a number of on-track stoppages during pre-season testing in Barcelona, but Steiner is unconcerned.
"The test, in general, was good," he said. "We had a few small problems, which we can address before Australia.
"Obviously, we test to find these problems and, hopefully, we've found them all. Performance-wise, it's too early to say how we'll go in Australia. We have to wait until we go into qualifying on Saturday.
"We'll know after qualifying where we are. The long-term performance for 2019, we'll only find that out after we've started a few races."
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