Magnussen sees ‘big winter of catching up’ ahead for Haas


Kevin Magnussen admitted that the “only positive” about the Abu Dhabi GP weekend was that it signaled the end of a difficult season for Haas.

“I think the only positive today is that it was the last race and that we can close this year and look forward to next year,” he said after closing out the field at Yas Marina last Sunday evening.

The Dane’s comment was hardly facetious given how Haas had started its 2023 campaign - with a promising run of three top-ten points finishes in the opening five races – and how it ended its year.

After its promising opening salvo, the US outfit’s performance faltered, with Haas scoring just a single point in the remaining 17 rounds of the year, courtesy of Magnussen’s tenth-place finish in Singapore back in September.

Read also:

The 31-year-old pointed to the team's lack of development compared to their rivals as the main factor behind Haas’ decline.

“It’s not been a good year for us,” he continued. “We’ve not developed at the rate we should have, or we haven’t developed at all.

“I think we started the year in an okay position, but we lost out to the competition in the development race. It’s a big winter for us catching up, but I believe we can do it.”


In a nutshell, Haas’ recurring issue during the season was that the VF-23’s competitive pace during qualifying did not translate to the race, with the car’s performance endlessly declining in race trim.

Case in point, at Yas Marina, Nico Hulkenberg qualified a strong P8 but concluded his evening a lowly P15. The German driver offered his own review of F1’s season finale.

“The positive for me is how I’ve felt during this year, my feeling, my hunger to drive and to be back in F1, to be in the competition,” commented the Hulk.

“That’s been really fun and good despite the difficulties on the sporting side and the difficult Sundays. I’m still enjoying it very much and still hungry for more, so that’s very positive news.

“Otherwise it’s the story of the season, we just don’t have enough pace. I think [tyre] deg probably was not the problem today, just pace, we couldn’t keep up with the faster cars.

“It’s just one more time, but we put that one to bed now and hopefully have some better tools next year.”

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter