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Formula 1

Magnussen: “I don’t want to be a distraction”

Kevin Magnussen, who returned to Haas F1 after being dropped last season, has impressed with strong performances and has scored the majority of his team’s points so far.
Despite a lack of preparation, the Dane was able to adapt to this new generation of Formula One. He explains how he helps his team develop the VF-22 and, already, the single-seater of 2023, now that he has been reintegrated into the American team.
« You try to invest as much as possible. At the end of the day, I tell myself that the engineers and designers are doing their jobs. And our contribution as a driver remains limited at the engineering level. You try to express your desires for the car, being specific about balance and performance, and the engineering team handles the rest.
« But, you know, I wasn’t involved in the development of this car, and I adapted well to it anyway. At the end of the day, I suppose we’re all looking for the same thing: more downforce and power. And this vehicle excels in both areas. Next year, I believe, will be about consistency. The team is very familiar with me; they know what I like best and where my weaknesses are.
Valtteri Bottas is in a similar situation to Daniel Ricciardo, who left Mercedes F1 this season to join Alfa Romeo. The Finnish driver has also settled in well with his new team, and he is making the most of his long-term commitment by investing as much as possible in the development of the current car and that of next season.
« Actually, since joining the team, I believe I have already brought something mechanically to the car, in terms of how the car behaves mechanically. So that’s a plus. And then, yes, we will have to work closely with the team on the smallest detail for next year, depending on the behavior and operation of the car as well as the feelings of the drivers, who are always in the best position to judge.
« And when I’m at the factory, I try to go around asking questions and providing feedback to those who work in specific areas, which is something I really enjoy doing. I saw the model of next year’s car for the first time in the wind tunnel, and I really enjoy being involved in that way; it’s really interesting, and it’s something new for me at this point in the season to be projected so far ahead. I am, of course, committed to the long term, so it is beneficial to collaborate on common goals.