Steiner: I had not anticipated this development of events

Steiner: I had not anticipated this development of events

The resignation of Gunther Steiner and the appointment of Ayo Komatsu as head of Haas F1 were certainly among the most important news stories of the past week. In an interview with Sky Sports F1, Steiner said that at the end of the season he could not foresee events developing according to this scenario.

Question: Was there any preliminary discussion at the end of the season that Gene Haas would no longer see you as his team leader? Were you aware that you were in danger of being fired?
Günther Steiner: No. Of course, everyone was dissatisfied with the team’s results in 2023, but I did not foresee such a development. I knew the renewal of my contract was approaching, and when this moment came, it turned out that the contract would not be renewed.

Q: But you weren’t given a specific task? In the sense that the team should have finished in higher positions and earned more points than they did?
Günther Steiner: No, although there are always some tasks ahead of you, and we simply should not have been the last.

Q: How did you find out that you are no longer the team leader? You can say you’re one of the founders, and Gene Haas was just the investor. Did he call you and explain what he was going to do?
Günther Steiner: Yeah, Gene Haas called me – I was in Italy over the Christmas holidays, and he called me one day between Christmas and New Year’s.

Question: As it seems from the outside, this happened due to the fact that your relationship with him probably deteriorated during the season – how would you explain all this?
Günther Steiner: I can’t say he has expressed any clear dissatisfaction, but at the end of the day he is the owner of the team and can make all the decisions, and I just have to respect that. What I do is self-evident. Although I think everything was fine for ten years, but if he doesn’t want to continue working with me, that’s his right.

Q: They say you wanted Gene Haas to invest more in modernizing the team’s foundation, and believed that without this Haas F1 would not be able to progress, especially compared to its direct rivals. That. you insisted that you had to invest more money than the same Williams, AlphaTauri or Alfa Romeo do, and Gene was against this. Is this the right way to interpret your disagreements?
Günther Steiner: As for the correct explanation, I would say this: given the limited budgets, all teams invested in modernizing the infrastructure. And this cannot be called an expense – it is an investment. This is the most correct approach to using that part of the budget allocated to finance the team’s core activities.

Rivals started this in 2020 or 2021, some started this work last year, but everyone is doing it. Therefore, while observing other teams, I actually proposed my plan of necessary actions.

Source: F1 News

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