Esteban Gutierrez says he looks forward to securing more mileage in dry conditions at this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix as it will help fine-tune the setup of his Haas VF-16.
Melbourne’s season-opener saw intermittent showers disrupt the first two free practice sessions. That did not prevent the American team from scoring points on debut courtesy of Romain Grosjean’s sixth-place finish in an action-packed race.
Gutierrez, who was involved in a huge crash with Fernando Alonso, now wants to drive in more representative conditions in order to start unlocking more performance out of his machine.
“It will be very positive [to run in the dry] because we can finally work and experiment a little bit with the car and its setup,” the Mexican said. “Unfortunately, we have not been able to do that. It’s quite impressive that even though we have not been able to experiment a lot, we have a very good base line.
“So, I’m really looking forward to get to know more of the car to experiment more and really work on the best direction for our setup. Bahrain will help us a lot to get more consistent running, more laps in practice and hopefully a smooth weekend.”
In the wake of Haas’ dream F1 debut, owner Gene Haas and team principal Guenther Steiner quickly moved to keep expectations for the US outfit in check.
“Obviously, scoring points leaves a lot of confidence for the whole team, but we still have plenty of work to do,” Gutierrez commented. “I think, in general, we can go to Bahrain making our next step forward as a team.
“In both organisation and communication there has not been much time for the team to breathe because of the hard work in building the car and testing in Barcelona and then the first grand prix. Hopefully, we can consolidate things and get everything done and try to make the best of our potential.”