Kevin Magnussen believes he and Haas had the pace for a stronger result at Formula 1’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix but was stuck in the pack.
Magnussen started only 16th at Baku after being hampered by an intermittent electrical glitch during both practice and qualifying.
Magnussen made gains early on, despite sustaining front wing damage after tagging Valtteri Bottas, but spent much of the race amidst a train of cars in the midfield.
Magnussen came home in 13th place, a second behind Williams’ Alex Albon, having been directly behind his opponent for almost 30 laps.
“We were stuck in traffic the whole race, we had pace for much more but just couldn’t pass,” said Magnussen.
“Unfortunately, with the wing we have it’s really fast with no DRS but with DRS it doesn’t really have a big impact. Overtaking is very difficult, defending is pretty good because without DRS we’re pretty fast.
“That little detail made the difference because I think looking at the cars ahead I was way quicker than them but just couldn’t get past.
“A bit of the same story as last year as we were in the points until the end but this year, we had even more pace. Hopefully that carries onto Miami, and we will try again.”
Team-mate Nico Hulkenberg started from the pit lane after Haas opted to undertake set-up changes outside of parc ferme conditions.
Hulkenberg carried out a lengthy stint on Hard tyres in the hope of a potential late incident opening up his strategy, but such a situation failed to arise.
“It was hard work – I was head-down, focused,” said Hulkenberg. “It was a quali race to be honest for me, that was all I had but it was okay for 40 laps or so and then at the end, unfortunately the tyres started to drop quite rapidly.
“The Safety Car didn’t come out and that’s what we needed with the strategy we pursued.
“Nevertheless, it was good learning. We elected for a pit lane start and changed the set-up completely to something more conventional. We learned something, on the positive side, and now onto Miami where I think we’ll be more competitive.”