Guenther Steiner has pinned Haas' scoreless run on the improved reliability and operation of rival teams. Despite a strong start to the season, Haas have fallen away in the Constructors' Championship standings, dropping to P8 after the Japanese GP, behind Aston Martin. Kevin Magnussen's solid points haul at the start of the year looked to put the American team on course for a strong season, with the Dane scoring four times in five race events. However, since then the team have only scored in two additional Grand Prix weekends and have been outscored by Aston Martin and AlphaTauri in recent weeks. When asked about where Haas' deficit lies, Team Principal Steiner believed that the trend was evidence of other teams improving their reliability and operational problems. "I just think that the strong teams are reliable now, they are executing [race weekends] always very good," Steiner told media. "The top four teams, they're executing very good but then it's the other six teams which fight for ninth and tenth, that's what it looks like at the moment. "So, what does that come down to? I don't know, it's just competition and they've done the better job, there is nothing hidden in there."
Close contest down to budget cap
Despite the top three teams breaking away and effectively being in a separate contest, the battle for the remaining places in the Constructors' Championship appears to vary race-by-race. This season's fast-starting midfield teams like Haas and Alfa Romeo have dramatically tailed off in the second half of the season, whilst some teams which struggled earlier on in the campaign, like McLaren and Aston Martin, appear to be finding form. Steiner believes that this competitiveness is down to the effect of the budget cap, which he assumes will be more effective in the coming seasons. "But what you can take away, I think the budget cup works because the teams are as close together as they ever were," said Steiner. "The six teams behind the four [leading] teams are very close, anybody could score at any moment the 2 and 1 points [for ninth and tenth place]. "Obviously if somebody drops out then we move up a little bit more, but it shows that everything works, and I think in a few years it will close the teams up even more and everybody will be mixing it up more."