On January 10, 2023, Gunther Steiner‘s experience as the team principal of Haas came to an end. The American team will now be led on the track by Ayao Komatsu, formerly the Director of Engineering for the team based in Kannapolis and Maranello.
Owner Gene Haas explained why he wanted to shake up a team that, in 2024, will be starting its ninth year in its Formula 1 history. In the eight seasons already completed, Haas has never achieved a podium: “Why did I decide to change at the team principal level? The main reason is the performance – Gene Haas’ words reached the official F1 website – we have 160 races behind us without ever getting a podium, and in the last two years, we finished ninth or tenth in the standings. I’m not saying it’s solely Steiner’s fault, but I think the right time has come to change since the directions we were following have not borne fruit.”
“We had a very complicated end to the season, and I no longer accept finishing tenth,” added Gene Haas. “Having a more engineering approach might benefit us. With Komatsu in the role of team principal, we have put engineering at the heart of our organization. We evaluated which figure could be the right one for the change, and Ayao has been part of the team since the beginning of Haas’s adventure in F1 and knows all the details of our team.”
Gene Haas does not understand why, with the best power unit in the field – the Ferrari – Haas struggles to achieve significant results: “Ferrari has been by our side since the beginning of our experience in the Circus and provides us with incredible engines. I am quite embarrassed by our results despite having top-notch Ferrari material, including suspensions. Sauber will become Audi in 2026, so in perspective, we could remain the only Ferrari customer, and we must do much better; we cannot be so far from the performance of the Maranello team. We have their engine, which is the best in the field, we have a good chassis. I talk to many engineers, and I think our biggest flaw is aerodynamics. We have to work hard to find the right corrections in this regard; I will no longer accept being humiliated every Sunday.” – the American founder, president, and sole stockholder of Haas Automation concluded.
Show your support for Scuderia Ferrari with official merchandise collection! Click here to enter the F1 online Store and shop securely! And also get your F1 tickets for every race with VIP hospitality and unparalleled insider access. Click here for the best offers to support Charles and Carlos from the track!