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Magnussen switch to Haas F1 confirmed

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Kevin Magnussen will switch from Renault Sport F1 Team to Haas F1 Team for 2017 and beyond, the American team has confirmed.

The 24-year-old Dane will thus be in his third different team in as many seasons since his 2014 debut with McLaren, having only been there for one year and then coming back to F1 with Renault this year after a one-year race hiatus.

The silly season has been such that when Nico Hulkenberg confirmed his move from Sahara Force India to Renault, it left Magnussen and Jolyon Palmer ultimately fighting for one remaining position in the Enstone-based team.

But other machinations developed and with Gene Haas’ American F1 team having eyed Magnussen’s talent, it saw him fit as an option alongside Romain Grosjean as Esteban Gutierrez announced his departure on Thursday.

Magnussen will now join Haas and for the first time in his F1 career, looks set to have his future set for more than just one year at a time.

“This is a fantastic opportunity and I’m very happy to be a part of Haas F1 Team,” Magnussen said in a release. “Obviously, I’m confident in my abilities as a Formula One driver, but I’m also very confident of what Haas F1 Team can do in its second season and every season thereafter. Gene Haas has come into Formula One with a strong vision and a different way of doing things. He’s making it work and work well. I’ve had a good vantage point all season long, and I’m looking forward to getting behind the wheel of next year’s Haas VF-17.”

“From the time we began looking at drivers, Kevin Magnussen was always on our short list,” added Gene Haas, founder and chairman, Haas F1 Team. “He’s accomplished a lot in a very short period of time, and we feel like he can accomplish a lot with us. Our second season will bring a new set of challenges, and we feel that pairing Kevin with Romain will help us develop our new car and continue our growth.

“I want to thank Esteban Gutiérrez for all of his efforts. He’s been an instrumental part of our first year in Formula One and we’re looking forward to finishing the season strong with him and Romain.”

Renault, meanwhile, thanked Magnussen for his year with them in a way only Renault could:

Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport

Photo: IndyCar
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A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.

Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.

That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.

However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.

“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”

Ryan Hunter-Reay during testing at ISM Raceway. Photo: IndyCar

Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”

Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.

“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”

Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

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