Haas will miss the first morning of Formula 1 testing in Bahrain due to the late arrival of freight.
This year’s pre-season has not gone to plan for Haas.
First the team struggled to keep their VF-22 running in the Barcelona group shakedown, Haas covering the fewest laps of all the teams, and then they had to say goodbye to Nikita Mazepin and their title sponsor, Russian fertilizer company Uralkali.
Their troubles continued on Monday when a report emerged claiming that Haas’ freight wouldn’t arrive at the Sakhir circuit in time for the start of this week’s three-day Bahrain test.
According to Auto Motor und Sport, the two Haas VF-22s and the team’s spare parts were stuck at the airport in Doncaster after the plane carrying the freight experienced technical problems.
AMuS said on Monday that Haas were ‘looking for replacement solutions’, which is a gamble given the tense situation in cargo air traffic.
‘The rest of the teams expect the bulk of their equipment to arrive in Bahrain today [March 7].’
The good news for Haas is that two days later the freighted has arrived but the bad news is the timing means they won’t be out on the on track until Thursday afternoon’s session.
“The team’s freight arrived late last night to the circuit in Bahrain,” the team tweeted.
“This delay will impact our programme but we are targeting being out on track for the second session Thursday afternoon.”
First image of Haas F1's branding after breaking the contract with Uralkali.#F1 #F1Testing #HaasF1 pic.twitter.com/YMNHgH9bcH
— Decalspotters (@decalspotters) March 9, 2022
The team also confirmed that reserve driver Pietro Fittipaldi would be the one behind the wheel on Thursday afternoon.
He’ll then hand the car over to race driver Mick Schumacher for Friday’s running.
But what Haas don’t yet know is whether their second race driver, still unknown, will be in action on the Saturday.
The team is reportedly considering a short list of three drivers, Kevin Magnussen, Nico Hulkenberg and Antonio Giovinazzi.
While Ralf Schumacher would like Haas to sign Alpine’s Formula 2 champ Oscar Piastri, Gene Haas says he wants an experienced driver in the car this season.
“We’re in the process of looking at several candidates,” Haas said.
“We’ll see who is available and what we have to deal with.
“Pietro will definitely be in it [for testing], that’s what he’s for, he’s the test driver.
“I think we’d obviously like to get someone with a bit more actual experience.
“We just have to see what’s available.”
The 2022 season begins March 20 with the Bahrain GP.
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