At the end of its inaugural season in 2016, Haas F1 Team finished a very respectable eighth in the constructors standings with a total of 29 points. That tally was the most of any new team in this millennium.
When Jaguar debuted in 2000 and when Toyota came on the scene in 2002, each entity managed only two point-paying finishes in their entire first seasons for a combined total of six points.
How would Haas F1 Team fare in its second season of the FIA Formula One World Championship – a season with a new car built under new technical regulations that had to be designed amid the 2016 campaign? Quite well, it appears.
Nine races into its sophomore season, Haas F1 Team has equaled its point tally from 2016. Seven times the American outfit has come away with points, and drivers Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen enter the British Grand Prix this weekend at Silverstone Circuit looking to secure points for an eighth time and sixth in a row.
The points haul has allowed Haas F1 Team to tighten its grip on its seventh-place standing in the constructors ranks, opening up an 11-point advantage over the eighth-place factory Renault team while knocking on the sixth-place door of Toro Rosso, only four points ahead.
Grosjean scored the organization’s best result so far this year when he finished sixth in last Sunday’s Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. That effort followed Magnussen’s seventh-place drive in the preceding Azerbaijan Grand Prix. And nestled in between two single-point results by Grosjean in the Spanish Grand Prix and Canadian Grand Prix was Haas F1 Team’s first double points finish in the Monaco Grand Prix where Grosjean finished eighth and Magnussen came home 10th. Twenty-one points have been netted in the last five races.
While some in the Formula One paddock rue back-to-back races, Haas F1 Team relishes the quick turnaround in between Spielberg and Silverstone. The still young organization is on an obvious roll and has proven to be rock solid in its second year of operation. The less downtime between races, the better.
That there is less time between races is appropriate considering a lap around Silverstone will take less time than ever before. The 5.891-kilometer (3.660-mile), 18-turn track that is roughly a two-hour drive from London is considered one of Formula One’s power circuits. It is one of the series’ fastest venues, with an average speed of around 225 kph (140 mph) that is certain to increase after this year’s British Grand Prix thanks to the blindingly-quick speeds drivers are able to achieve with the current-generation car that is lower, wide and demonstrably faster.
Silverstone is the third longest circuit on the Formula One calendar, behind only Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps (7.004 kilometers, 4.352 miles) and Baku City Circuit (6.003 kilometers, 3.730 miles). The majority of its layout is comprised of medium- and high-speed corners, allowing drivers to run at full throttle for 65 percent of their lap. Teams run medium to high levels of downforce in their racecars to better assist with the impressive cornering speeds achieved on the track’s sweeping corners. The track has relatively few long straights, making these downforce levels achievable.
Achievement is what Grosjean and Magnussen aim to do every time they climb into their respective Haas VF-17s. Whether it’s the speed at which the duo has matched Haas F1 Team’s point total from last year or the speed they look to achieve on Silverstone’s serpentine layout, the British Grand Prix provides opportunity to gain even more points and more ground on the Formula One establishment.