The Haas Formula 1 team will be devoting their entire development focus to the 2022 season, meaning their ’21 car will undergo only minor changes in order for it to comply with the rules.
Haas’ VF-20 underwent minimal development across the ’20 season in part because of the coronavirus pandemic, but also because of strained finances at the American-owned team.
That’s not likely to change this year according to team boss Guenther Steiner, who revealed that the team has opted against spending any of its development tokens, instead opting to focus its efforts on next year when major rule changes will grip the sport.
With the FIA mandating that last years cars be carried over for this year, bar changes to the floor, diffuser and rear brake ducts, a token system was implemented to ensure teams were restricted in what they can and can’t change.
Most teams are expected to use both tokens available to them, but Steiner says Haas won’t bother, instead the only work being carried out on its new car will be the bare minimum as specified in the rules.
“We could have built a new nose, but we were too late,” he explained to Auto Motor und Sport. “The wind tunnel program had been shut down too long for us to have the nose ready before the deadline at the end of September.”
However Steiner says the ability to switch focus from ’22 back to ’21 is there if a major issue is discovered during pre-season testing.
“It can happen that we have to work on the 2021 car again if we discover during the test drives that we have made a mistake.
“That would be plan B. Actually, we don’t want to use any more wind tunnel time for the 2021 car.”
The ongoing pandemic is also causing some issues for Haas. The current travel restrictions means Ferrari are unable to send over technicians to install the new power unit in the car, which is delaying the final build of the cars.