Haas team principal Guenther Steiner insists he is not concerned about the possibility of Romain Grosjean getting a one-race ban for receiving 12 penalty points.
Any driver that reaches 12 penalty points over a 12 month period receives an automatic one-race ban, and Grosjean moved on to 10 points after a collision with Charles Leclerc in Austin. One of his points is set to expire on the day after the Mexican Grand Prix, meaning that if Grosjean receives two further points this weekend, he will trigger the suspension.
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“I think he gets one [point] back in Mexico,” Steiner said. “It’s tight, huh? We joked about it, maybe we should start to look for a replacement driver.
“I wouldn’t bandage my head before I’ve got a hole in it. When it happens, I will deal with it. Hopefully it doesn’t happen, but when it happens… if I start to work now on things which could happen, I would have a lot to do, so that’s my opinion about it.
“If it happens, we are pretty well prepared for any eventuality. There are a few people out there I would call up and see if they would drive. But I think it will be good.”
Haas lost ground to Renault in the constructors’ championship after Kevin Magnussen was disqualified for using too much fuel during the race at COTA, but Steiner is not deterred by the 22-point gap between the teams.
“If we get something like they did [in Austin], we can do it at the next three races,” he said. “Our car is faster. For me, this is not like just because they got lucky, we give up. They had a good points day, but we can have a bigger points day and we’ve got three races to go, so why would I give up? We can make 15 points in a day. We did 22 in Austria. Let’s race again in Mexico.”
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ABOUT CHRIS MEDLAND
While studying Sports Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, Chris managed to talk his way into working at the British Grand Prix in 2008 and was retained for three years before joining ESPN F1 as Assistant Editor. After three years at ESPN, a spell as F1 Editor at Crash Media Group was followed by the major task of launching F1i.com’s English-language website and running it as Editor. Present at every race since the start of 2014, he has continued building his freelance portfolio, working with international titles. As well as writing for RACER, he contributes to BBC 5Live and Sky Sports in the UK as well as working with titles in Japan and the Middle East.