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Magnussen stunned by pace of new F1 cars

Magnussen stunned by pace of new F1 cars

F1 News

Magnussen stunned by pace of new F1 cars

Magnussen stunned by pace of new F1 cars
Ian Parkes & Topher Smith

Kevin Magnussen has admitted his surprise at the speed of the 2022 cars having expected them to be considerably slower than when he last raced in 2020.

Magnussen made a shock comeback to the F1 paddock with Haas as a replacement for the ousted Nikita Mazepin, returning in style by setting the fastest time on the second day of pre-season testing in Bahrain.

With the Dane turning his first laps since he left Haas at the end of 2020, he expressed his delight at being the wheel of an F1 car again but couldn't hide his surprise at how quick they were.

The Dane left the team ahead of the last campaign and took up a drive in IMSA with Chip Ganassi and had signed up for Peugeot's upcoming World Endurance Championship programme.

But having completed test running ahead of the first grand prix of the year next weekend, Magnussen assessed the Haas as "pretty good" and "fun to drive".

"I’ve been out of a Formula 1 car for a year and a half, it’s just super cool to be back in such a fast race car," he added.

"I did some quali sims [on day two] and it felt super cool, very fast!

“I expected it to be slower, I’ve got to admit I don’t really understand the regulations yet because I’ve had nothing to do with it so far."

Magnussen compared his fastest lap time to that of teammate Mick Schumacher's qualifying effort at the same circuit last year, not expecting to be so close to the 2021 times.

“My expectation was that it was going to be a lot slower, actually the lap time I did last night was only eight tenths slower than Mick’s qualifying lap from last year here.

"So not that much slower than the old Haas at least, still super cool to drive a Formula 1 car."

Formula 1 return "like the dream coming true again"

Magnussen jumped at the chance to return to the paddock despite his commitments in endurance racing.

Expressing why he decided to turn his back on a factory drive in a world championship, the 29-year-old explained: “It means a lot.

"Formula 1 is the pinnacle of motorsport and has been my dream ever since I was a little kid. I’ve had a few seasons in Formula 1 already but this comeback feels like the dream coming true again.

“I’ve been in this situation before, the first time I got an F1 drive I was super excited and happy but it almost feels as good as the first time as it was so unexpected and such a surprise.

“I had no idea I was even on the radar of coming back to F1, then this situation happens and I get the drive. This feels super cool."

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