Kevin Magnussen confirms 2022 F1 return with Haas


Kevin Magnussen will replace Nikita Mazepin at Haas for 2022 and beyond, after signing a multi-year deal with the team

Kevin Magnussen Haas overalls

Magnussen's last F1 race was in 2020

LAT via Haas

Kevin Magnussen will replace Nikita Mazepin at Haas this season, signing a multi-year deal to return to the Formula 1 team he left at the end of 2020.

The 29-year-old has been released from his sports car contracts with Peugeot and Chip Ganassi Racing. He will have his first drive in the VF-22 car at the preseason test in Bahrain, which starts tomorrow.

Magnussen had raced in in six F1 seasons, including four years at Haas, before being pushed out of the team and leaving the grid, disillusioned with running at the back.

But this year’s new regulations could bring a change in the competitive order and Magnussen said the opportunity was “too appealing” to turn down following Mazepin’s sacking.

“I was obviously very surprised but equally very excited to receive the call from Haas F1 Team,” said Magnussen. “I was looking in a different direction regarding my commitments for 2022 but the opportunity to return to compete in Formula 1, and with a team I know extremely well, was simply too appealing.

“I really have to say thank you to both Peugeot and Chip Ganassi Racing for releasing me promptly.”

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Magnussen was due to compete in a second season of the IMSA SportsCar Championship this year, after winning a race in 2o21. He was also part of Peugeot’s World Endurance Championship line-up, due to be called on when the 9X8 Hypercar makes its debut after this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours.

Instead, he will be tasked with ensuring Haas develops the VF-22 in the right direction, with upgrades expected to appear at a frenetic race across the gris during the early part of the season.

“Kevin was a key component in our previous successes – not least when we both scored our best finishes in Formula 1 back in 2018,” said team principal Guenther Steiner. “He continued to show last year that he’s an elite race car driver adding wins and podiums to his resume.

“I can’t wait to get back behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car”

“As a veteran presence in both the garage and the engineering room, he’ll provide a solid benchmark for us with the on-going development of the VF-22. We’re all looking forward to welcoming Kevin back this week in Bahrain.”

Haas reserve driver, Pietro Fittipaldi had been in line for the vacant seat and will still drive for the first morning of testing, before Magnussen and team-mate Mick Schumacher take over the driving.

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“When looking for a driver who could bring value to the team, not to mention a wealth of Formula 1 experience, Kevin was a straightforward decision for us,” said Steiner. “Kevin’s immediate availability means we can tap into him as a resource for pre-season testing alongside both Mick Schumacher and Pietro Fittipaldi. Pietro’s going to be first in this week with half a day’s running at the test on Thursday – that’s a great opportunity for him, with Mick and Kevin doing the rest ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix.”

Despite describing his last season with Haas as “hopeless”, Magnussen maintained contact with team-owner Gene Haas and Steiner, leading to the call ahead of today’s announcement.

“I want to thank Gene Haas and Guenther Steiner for the chance to resume my Formula 1 career – I know just how competitive they both are and how keen they are to return to competing week in and week out,” said Magnussen. “We’ve enjoyed a solid relationship and our positive association remained even when I left at the end of 2020.

“I’ve been briefed as much as possible on the development of the VF-22 and the potential in the package. There’s work to do but I’m excited to be a part of it. I can’t wait to get back behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car in Bahrain.”