An all-season problem of being able to keep their tyres in the right operating window has led to the Haas drivers often falling down the order in races, with the outfit unable to find a fix the problem in the short term.
Steiner has admitted that the frustration is hard to accept – but hopes that if the team sorts the problems out for 2020, then it can quickly move on from what is happening right now.
“It’s tough at the moment,” said Steiner, whose team is currently ninth in the constructors’ championship standings with two races to go.
“It is like having a football team with 11 defenders and no strikers, and everyone attacks you. You cannot do anything.
“It is damage limitation and if everyone else does a good job then it doesn’t work, you can’t do anything. Every strategy you do is wrong because you still fall back.
“You know now that if not everything goes perfect, it is always the same, we fall back. We cannot do anything about it. We are sitting there like a lame duck.”
With the team having got to the bottom of why its car has struggled this year, hopes are high that it can bounce back in 2020. And for Steiner, he views next year as the start of something totally different.
“I hope we can open a new book,” he said. “Not a new page… a new book. For me, 2019 never happened and we can forget about that year happening. It is pretty challenging.
“For me I look forward to get out of it. To overcome the challenge, that is what keeps you going.
“My expectations are not to get too upset about the situation. Maybe it will make me appreciate the good days more when they come back. You need to go through the lows to appreciate the highs.”
Haas driver Kevin Magnussen thinks it important that the Haas team is not too hard on itself, and says it should remember just how far it has come in F1 in recent years.
“We’ve had an off year this year which isn’t great, but we finished fifth in the championship last year,” said the Dane.
“That was a pretty impressive thing to be doing in the third year. Toro Rosso have never done it, they’ve never finished fifth. So we’ve already finished higher than Toro Rosso has ever done, I think that is hugely impressive.
“Very quickly people start to forget that and even we do. We want more and more all the time, but sometimes it is good to stop and look back and see we’ve done very well. And we can do that again.”
Kevin Magnussen, Haas VF-19, leads Romain Grosjean, Haas VF-19
Photo by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images