Romain Grosjean maintains Haas can take positives away from an otherwise desperate weekend for the new team as contact with Marcus Ericsson at the start failed to disguise the car's general lack of pace.
Following headline-grabbing turns in Australia and Bahrain, Grosjean struggled to dial the VF16 into the Shanghai International Circuit even before he was struck by Ericsson's Sauber at the start of the race, forcing him to change the front-wing.
It was an incident he blamed squarely on the Swede, not accepting his justification that he wasn't aware the Grosjean was there.
“I know Ericsson was on the outside of Turn 1, I was on the inside, so he could carry more speed going in to Turn 2, but then I was there and he just turned in. I tried to turn in as much as I could, I literally had two wheels on the grass trying to avoid him but he just turned in.
“I went to see him after the race: 'Oh I didn't see you!' I said: 'Well come on, you passed all the way around the outside so how could you not see me?' I'm not so happy with that.”
Regardless, Grosjean admits he was is baffled by the general lack of form, saying he expected better even if it wasn't going to be a top six challenge as it was in the first two races.
“A s**t race but half-positive. It's normally in the toughest situations that you learn. I think we came down to earth that Formula 1 is a complicated world. There is a lot of things going on.
“Since Friday morning I was not happy with my car at all. We need to analyse why, we've tried a few things and obviously we never got it completely right. So it will be interesting to understand what's the difference from Bahrain, why we're down?
“Is everything OK on the car? Because our performance is not exactly where we should be even though our two first races we took advantage of a lot of things and our performance was a bit higher than what we should have been capable of.”