Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has labelled the French Grand Prix as the American squad’s “worst weekend” of its four-year history in Formula 1.

Having been hampered by tyre-related performance issues all season, Haas drivers Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean have been regulars in Q3, only to fall back through the pack in races.

But at Paul Ricard, neither car managed to get beyond Q2 and both drivers were uncompetitive during the race, before Grosjean was forced to retire from his home event, with Magnussen struggling to a lowly 17th and only ahead of the Williams pair.

“In the four-year history, I think this was our worst weekend in all,” Steiner concluded.

“In the race we still struggled. I don’t know why. What is bizarre to me is that a car that was good enough to qualify seventh and eighth in the first race and sixth in Monte Carlo, all of a sudden we are second-last.

“Don’t ask me what it is, I don’t know. Don’t ask me please, because I wouldn’t know. We need to find out, it’s very disappointing, ending up in this situation but also not having an understanding of it, that’s the worst of it all.

“This was a lot worse than Montreal, because already on Friday and in qualifying we weren’t good. At least in Montreal in qualifying we got one car into Q3, but here we were happy to get one car out of Q1. So that was a lot worse.

“Then if you think in Monte Carlo we qualified sixth. Then the race pace is difficult to say in Monte Carlo because everyone was going slow for obvious reasons, but the race pace was there. So it’s very bizarre, the whole thing.”

Haas has fallen to ninth place in the constructors’ championship after managing just three points finishes in the opening eight rounds, leaving it 24 points adrift of current midfield leaders McLaren.

Despite the team’s issues, Steiner insists he is not “getting depressed” and believes continued hard work to try and understand what is going wrong is the best way to approach the situation.

“It’s not depressing," he added. "I’m realistic. I’m not getting depressed. I’m getting… angry is the wrong word. For me, it’s a challenge, but it’s not a positive challenge.

“We need to get out of this. If we get depressed you give up. We never give up. In racing, the day you give up you stay where you are. You need to get the anger out and just keep on working.

“That’s what I told the guys. I said, ‘Guys, you need to work a lot more now than you did before. There’s no point waiting for something to come, you need to go back now and understand why we are where we are. That’s the only thing you can do.

“Once you know why you are where you are, then you can find solutions. If you don’t know that one, how can you work on solutions? Then you work on everything and then you make a new car.”

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