United States GP: Practice Team Notes – Haas
Round 17 of the 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship kicked off with practice Friday at the Circuit of the Americas as the teams prepared for Sunday’s United States Grand Prix.
The track action consisted of two 60-minute sessions – FP1 and FP2 – on the 5.513 kilometer (3.426 mile) circuit, 20 corners – Formula 1 basking in the Texan heat on opening day with a temperature of l air oscillating around 28 degrees Celsius (82.4 degrees Fahrenheit) and track temperature peaking at 39 degrees Celsius (102.2 degrees Fahrenheit).
Mick Schumacher kicked off FP1 with a wake-up run in his VF-21 on the Pirelli P Zero White hard tire – Nikita Mazepin using the medium yellow compound to start. A switch to red soft rubber for a base stint gave Schumacher a fastest lap in 1: 40.323. Mazepin failed to set a competitive lap time after a stop at Turn 19 cost the Russian the best of his tire set. A last full outing full of fuel ended FP1 – Schumacher’s session ending a little earlier than expected after contact with Perez (Red Bull Racing) at turn 12 – the German returning to the garage as a precaution.
FP2 turned out to be another professional affair with Schumacher finishing the session 17th overall on the timesheets thanks to a sim qualifying lap of 1: 37.041 on the soft tires. Mazepin finished 20th with a best effort of 1: 38.026 – also on soft rubber. Schumacher also used the second drive to sample the middle rubber with Mazepin trying the hard tires to start. Both cars finished Friday’s race with another high-fuel race to the checkered flag.
The Uralkali Haas F1 Team completed a total of 83 laps on Friday in FP1 and FP2 – 42 by Mazepin and 41 by Schumacher.
Nikita Mazepin: âIt was bumpy and at high speed which is not ideal, but it definitely gives the track some character. I didn’t have the easiest day with the traffic, the track is very long but for a some reason I just couldn’t adapt I saw a lot of cars complaining about it so unfortunately on a track where the degradation is so high we couldn’t get the pace of a ride we needed today, it should be good tomorrow.
Mick Schumacher: âLoved it – it’s fun to drive here and it’s nice to see the crowds coming out. It was a good start to our first weekend in Austin with still a lot to do. We had a few patches that were very eye-catching for some reason, others weren’t, but it’s about finding the right line and setup for these circumstances which I think will last all weekend. great to have another appearance in Q2 to confirm what we did in Turkey, we’ll just have to wait and see. “
Guenther Steiner: âWell the most important element today was that we were back in America in front of some failed fans last year. It was great to see everyone here having fun and the atmosphere is still energetic at COTA – it’s a real boost and bodes well for the rest of the weekend. On track it’s been a solid day – nothing too unexpected from the two free practice sessions, everything was pretty standard. We’re where we’re at in terms of performance – we know that, but it was good for Nikita and Mick to get their first laps on another new track, it’s part of their rookie experience. “
Check out our COTA Friday gallery, here.