Haas hit with recurring winglet problems in Austin

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Guenther Steiner says Haas has been suffering from recurring problems with rear winglets so far during the United States Grand Prix weekend.

Romain Grosjean lost bodywork in both practice sessions on Friday in Austin, with the second incident seeing FP2 red flagged to clear the debris after he lost the monkey seat from the rear of his car. Steiner says Haas has already identified the problem and is confident a fix can be put in place for the rest of the weekend.

“We didn’t do good [on Friday]," Steiner said. "We need to do better, we had a few issues with some rear winglets breaking off. We are not there with the speed, we need to work hard to get there for FP3, we need to step it up.”

Asked how many times the Haas cars lost a part, Steiner replied: “Too many!

"I don’t know, three or four times, but it’s always this winglet, and we realise now why it is and we’ll fix it. We didn’t expect these high loads, and between these loads and the vibration we lost them.”

Steiner pointed to the high-speed first sector which sees drivers attacking the kerbs as one of the reasons for the failures.

“Kerbs, and the high downforce through the first sector, corners three, four and five, there are high loads with a lot of vibration. We’ve seen it and we’ll fix it.”

At the end of FP1, both drivers stopped at the end of the pit lane and had to be recovered by Haas mechanics, but Steiner says those incidents were much less worrying.

“One stalled and the other couldn’t find reverse, so we pushed them both back in. Nothing dramatic.

“It was a mapping issue on the engine side, so the first stalled, and the second one, we broke the gearbox twice when we went off, so we said to Romain ‘Just call it a day and we’ll push you back’. Instead of trying to engage a gear and break the box, so we did it for safety reasons.

“There was nothing to be gained to do something. He said he couldn’t get it into reverse, so we told him to stop the car and avoid any further problems.”

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