Belgian Grand Prix: Race RecapJuly 30, 2023
MoneyGram Haas F1 Team drivers Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg finished 15th and 18th respectively at Round 13 of the 2023 FIA Formula 1 World Championship, the Belgian Grand Prix, held Sunday at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.
Magnussen started from P16 on the Pirelli P Zero Red soft tires and went for an aggressive undercut by pitting on lap five, taking on Yellow medium tires, to emerge in contention for the top 10 positions.
Magnussen came in for a second time on lap 26, taking on another set of medium tires, and held 13th place, before relinquishing positions late on to rivals on fresher rubber. Magnussen completed the race in P15.
Hulkenberg began the race on medium tires from the pit lane after changes were made to the set-up of his VF-23 outside of parc ferme regulations. Hulkenberg also ran a two-stop strategy in the race, changing on lap 13 for softs, before coming in once more on lap 25 for another set of the soft tires.
Hulkenberg used the compound to set the fourth-fastest overall lap time during the race and was classified in 18th place, securing a two-car finish for MoneyGram Haas F1 Team.
Up front, Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen claimed his eighth successive victory, and 10th for the season, ahead of teammate Sergio Perez and Scuderia Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc.
MoneyGram Haas F1 Team enters the summer recess holding eighth position in the Constructors’ Championship on 11 points.
“I felt there was a little more to fight for this race, I had a bit more competitiveness. We still have way more degradation than everyone else, which I think is the main differentiator today. Pace-wise at the beginning of the stints it felt like we could fight for the top 10 but didn’t have the degradation to keep fighting to the end. I think we’re getting a good understanding of what we need to do and I’m looking forward to the second half of the year, looking forward to some upgrades, and making some changes to the car. Hopefully we can get back in the game, we’re still P8 in the Constructors’ Championship and that’s our aim as a team to gain another position from last year. We’ve got everything to play for.”
“I think tire degradation was high and also car pace wasn’t good enough to challenge for points. We’ll reset, regroup and we have three weeks to refresh and hopefully come back stronger in Zandvoort. I’m disappointed after a day like today, but I’m first and foremost still very happy to be back, enjoying myself and having a good time in the car. Working and pushing the team and having battles on-track, the positives still outweigh a difficult Sunday, but we need and want some performance in the car.”
“The team got the best out of what was possible from our car, and both fought hard. In the end, we came short on our issue of tire life, so we fell back in the middle of the race. We couldn’t fight with the others and if we go into overtime with our tires, we just get slower, and that’s what happened again. We know our deficit, we’re working on it and hopefully we can resolve it fast but all in all, the team did a good job. For Nico to change his car around, it was all executed very well. Now we go on summer break, and hopefully come back stronger.”
Event: Belgian Grand Prix – Sunday July 30
Location: Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium
Layout: 7.004-kilometer (4.352-mile), 19-turn circuit
Air Temps: 18 degrees Celsius (64.4 degrees Fahrenheit)
Track Temps: 27 degrees Celsius (80.6 degrees Fahrenheit)
Race Winner: Max Verstappen of Red Bull Racing
Team Result: Kevin Magnussen – Started 16th / 15th (Running – completed 44/44 laps
Nico Hulkenberg – Started from Pitlane / Finished 18th (Running – completed 44/44 laps)