Haas: just being competitive was the aim
Haas team boss Gunther Steiner has said that being competitive against other cars was more important than taking points at Australia last weekend.
Romain Grosjean was able to benefit from the race being red-flagged when Fernando Alonso and Haas driver Esteban Gutierrez collided to fit new tyres and finish sixth, holding off a string of other cars.
The result means the team is the first new outfit to claim points on its debut since Toyota also finished sixth in 2002.
“You aim high and you want points, but after qualifying [19th and 20th] we didn’t expect to finish sixth,” said Steiner. “A deserved sixth, on merit, because the speed is there, it is pretty cool. This is beyond our expectations.
“Being competitive with the other cars – that is more satisfying than taking points. We were there and we could do the same times as a Force India, which isn’t bad.”
Grosjean added: “It feels like a win for all of us. Everyone has done a top job. We did 100 per cent of what we could do.
“We don’t have the best car, we’re not standing on the top step, but we’ve done the best we could have done. The morale boost we will get from this top result will help everyone get more confidence.”