Guenther Steiner breaks silence over Haas exit and refusal to bid staff goodbye – “Formula 1 has changed a lot”

Recently-sacked Haas team principal has broken his silence on the reasons behind his abrupt exit from the American team.

Steiner was shown the door earlier this week, with team owner Gene Haas claiming that lack of results on the track had meant that it was the only logical option left for him.

Guenther Steiner. Credit:
Guenther Steiner. Credit:

However, Steiner has been part of the Haas setup since the team’s entry into the sport and the fact that there was not even a single comment from him in the press release confirming his exit almost made it certain that his contract was not mutually terminated. F1 pundits have pointed to ‘friction‘ within the Haas camp as being a primary reason behind Steiner’s exit.

Ayao Komatsu was internally promoted to assume the position of team principal from Steiner, while Simone Resta also left the team to return to Ferrari.

Appearing at the Autosport International show in Birmingham, Steiner explained why he had been sacked, claiming that he wasn’t even allowed to say goodbye to his team staff.

“Since we have had this model, Formula 1 has changed a lot,” Steiner said.

“We saw during COVID how much bigger it grew. How much different it got with the budget cap, how we used the budget cap.

“If you look at all the other teams, they were all gearing up. They are not gearing up now. They started to gear up, some three years ago, some years ago, some last year.

“I don’t know Gene Haas’ plans for the future. He didn’t share them with me, he doesn’t have to, by the way.

“I’m actually not really interested in it anymore.”

What will Steiner do in the future?

Steiner has been involved in F1 for a number of years now and his popularity has surged in recent years largely down to his no-nonsense attitude seen on the Netflix docu-series Drive to Survive.

The Italian-American believes that he now deserves to spend some time on the sidelines and chill with his family before plotting a return to the sport.

“I don’t know if Formula 1 wants me,” Steiner said.

“Now at the moment, I’m very chilled out about the situation.

“I’m not unhappy and I know a lot of people, I’ve got a lot of friends and for me just hanging around for a year doing the obb job, that does it for me. If something interesting comes along, which challenges me, yes, but just staying in Formula 1 just to do a job, maybe is now what I want to do.

“I like to be with people but it needs to be something where I can see a future in it. I don’t just want to go there and then move on to the next thing. I want to do something where you can achieve something and you try to get somewhere and then I will do it.

“But as I said, at the moment, I just want to chill out. It was 10 tough years behind me. I’m still good. I’ve got plenty of stuff to do.”

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