MEXICO CITY -- Guenther Steiner says Haas is due some good luck after a bizarre incident limited Romain Grosjean to just three laps of running on Friday practice.
Early in the afternoon session Grosjean, who sat out of FP1 in place of Antonio Giovinzzi, spun on the exit of the final corner and, having come to a stop, slowly got his car moving again. As the Frenchman got up to speed again on the run towards Turn 1 his left-rear tyre delaminated, spreading bits of rubber and debris all over the circuit.
Steiner revealed the extent of the damage gave the team too much work to get Grosjean back on track before the end of the session.
"When he flat-spotted the tyre, the tyre unwound itself, destroyed the floor," Steiner said. "Then we saw a high impact on the rear suspension and we didn't want to take any more risk that anything more breaks, so to change the part we had to take the gearbox off and we ran out of time and just ran out of work.
"The floor is damaged and the front wing, when he went off on the grass, ripped the front endplate off. The rest is fine because we just need to check the components as we saw very high loads on the suspension."
Steiner confirmed the gearbox change he referred to was planned, meaning Grosjean will not incur a grid penalty.
Haas' recent run of races has been dogged by problematic starts to the weekend. Steiner says the continual problems are taking its toll on the American team's modest operation.
"I think we are not doing very well at the moment with clean sessions. The last three or four races... it's been so long [since a clean session] I can't remember them! It would be nice to have a clean session before the end of the year, so maybe we can get it done.
"But it's not why we come here, it's tough for everybody and consuming. The guys keep up with it well and we always keep on going and that's what we will be doing. But we need a break at some stage.
"I'm not a big believer of being unlucky, but I wouldn't call us lucky at the moment. It's like, if it can happen, it happens to us. Like the drain cover [in Sepang], that's the last thing we needed. We are good enough to damage ourselves, we don't need anyone to help us! But somebody did. It will turn round, then we will be lucky guys."
Pirelli's racing chief Mario Isola explained why the tyre delaminated in the way it did.
"He had a big flat-spot and he damaged the construction," he said. "That's why coming back to the pits he started to lose a bit of tread and the tyre was damaged. We will investigate and check everything with the tyre is OK.
"The other three tyres were also heavily flat-spotted. The rear left tyre was the one loaded and it was going sideways for a lot of meters and was damaged heavily compared to the other tyres."