Haas Plans Consecutive F1 Upgrade Tests at Imola

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Haas Plans Consecutive F1 Upgrade Tests at Imola
Ayao Komatsu

Haas brought out a big update for their VF-24 car at the Chinese Grand Prix. They added new parts like floor fences, mirrors, cooling outlets, and rear brake duct inlets.

At the Shanghai race, both Haas drivers did well with these new parts. Kevin Magnussen finished 10th in the sprint, and Nico Hulkenberg made it to Q3 and scored a point in the main race, starting from ninth on the grid.

But, because of the sprint format, Haas couldn’t do proper tests to compare the new parts with the old ones in China. They plan to do this comparison at the Imola race instead. They want to use the practice sessions there to really understand how the new parts perform.

Haas team principal Ayao Komatsu said, “Wind tunnel numbers are not everything, you know.” He explained that what they see on the track can be different from what they expect from the wind tunnel tests.

He talked more about this after the successful weekend in China. He said, “I don’t sit here and say ‘upgrade worked perfectly’ or ‘100%, I’m convinced’. I’m not saying that.” He mentioned that they couldn’t do proper tests during the sprint weekend but saw positive signs during practice.

Haas Plans Consecutive F1 Upgrade Tests at Imola
Ayao Komatsu

For the Miami Grand Prix, Haas will introduce more new parts for their car. Komatsu expects these parts to bring only a “very small” improvement in performance.

He explained, “We’re bringing [the package] in three phases. This [in China] was, I would say, a small step. But Miami will be even smaller, then Imola will be another smaller step. So, it’s just incremental.”

Komatsu emphasized the importance of even a small improvement in lap time. He said, “If you got a tenth, you know how much that changes the qualifying position… And then one qualifying position could mean whether you’re going to spend your first stint in traffic or free air, right? Then that will have a huge effect.”

If the tests at Imola don’t go well, Komatsu believes they can still use the data to make improvements before the summer break. He said, “Hopefully in Imola we can prove that what we’ve been doing is right… But worst case, if we prove that what we’ve been doing is not right, we’ve still got the chance to rectify it for the mid-season.”


By Preksha Sharma

being me means you've got to love cars, coffee and gilmore girls. sorry i don't make the rules.

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