Scoring all of Haas’ points in 2016, team boss Gene Haas has said Romain Grosjean made their first season in Formula 1 a success.
Grosjean put in impressive drives during the early stages of the season, with a sixth place finish in Australia and fifth in Bahrain.
With the Frenchman finishing off the year on 29 points, Haas is proud that his investment he took from Lotus became fruitful.
“I tell you, if it wasn’t for those 29 points we would have been in a world of hurt,” Haas told ESPN.
“So that in itself, just scoring those points, was worth every penny with him coming on board. I’m disappointed we couldn’t keep that same rate as we could have got 100 points [by season’s end], but I’m very happy with what we got.”
As a result of Grosjean’s former team-mate Esteban Gutierrez failing to score any points in 2016, Haas replaced him with Danish driver Kevin Magnussen and also revealed that the American team had been in contact with him in the past already.
“I think Kevin brings a racer’s perspective to the team,” he added.
“I think he’s good at getting points when you need to, which is extremely difficult to do – you can be extremely fast in qualifying and individual laps, but racing on race day is a another discipline. There are some people who are really great at it.
“We were talking to Kevin even before Grosjean [in 2015], we knew that he had a lot of potential. I’ve watched him drive around a lot of circuits and watched him in traffic and I think he has the ability to grab points when we need to, and that’s what we need.”