Haas's 2024 Car Predicted To Fall Short By New Team Principal: Not 'Good Enough'

F1
by Adam OndrikThursday, 18 January 2024 at 21:00
hulkenberg nico haas car latphoto4
The new team principal of Haas, Ayao Komatsu, asserted his 2024 challenger won't be good enough to match rivals.
Ayao Komatsu became the new principal of the Haas team and took over one of the toughest jobs in the paddock. Transforming the team that finished dead last in the 2023 season with limited resources will be quite a challenging task.
Going into the 2024 season, Guenther Steiner claimed his team could be at the top of the mid-field. However, Komatsu disagrees with this statement, as he explained to a small group of media at the UK base in Banbury:

"The ’24 car is a clear step, but whether it’s good enough against the competition to start off with, I don’t think so, because we started so late."

The problem for the American team was the significant upgrade the introduced during the United States Grand Prix didn't work at all, and that hindered their progress.

"We changed the concept so late as well, and then by actually doing the Austin upgrade, we diverted our resources a little bit."

Words of the Haas F1 team's principal suggest we can probably expect Haas to start the 2024 season in the same position in which they ended the most recent season in comparison to their rivals.

"For me, then the key is whatever the car in Bahrain, whatever problem we see, we try to understand it and then move from that point as a team."

Komatsu's mindset is quite reminiscent of what McLaren said ahead of the last season as the Papaya team entered the year with an uncompetitive car.
McLaren was one of the worst teams during the first few races of the season but then made an incredible development step forward, and it seems like the Japanese team principal would try to replicate that.

"We are a small team as you know. We’ve got to move as one, otherwise we don’t stand a chance. To answer your question directly, it is a step forward. Is it good enough? No. But what we do from that point is how we can show that we can improve the team or not."