Former Haas F1 Team Principal Guenther Steiner reflects on exit: “I can see that I stayed too long”

Photo Credit: MoneyGram Haas F1 Team
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Former Haas F1 boss Guenther Steiner left the team abruptly in January after 10 years of working with the team, between setting up the squad and then as team principal from 2016 to 2023.

After a disappointing finish to their 2023 where the team was last in the Constructors’ Championship, team owner Gene Haas decided to make some significant changes to the team.

Steiner’s contact was not renewed. He got replaced by the team’s then head of trackside engineering Ayao Komastsu for the 2024 season. Steiner on the other hand made a comeback to the paddock for the Bahrain season opener as an F1 analyst and a columnist.

In a recent article written by him for, Steiner admits that after having more time to contemplate things over the winter, he now realises he should have left Haas sooner.

“Life has been good since I left Haas ahead of this season, these last few weeks are the first time I’ve switched off from F1 for around a decade. This time has been good for me,” he wrote.

He also stated that he he stayed with Haas too long and has gotten “clarity” after stepping away from the role.

“The longer time goes on, the more I can see that I stayed at Haas too long. When you step away, you get clarity – and you can see what you need to do. While you’re there, you’re in denial, you think you can do it but you cannot.

Steiner also explained his motivation and drive started to decline gradually as the team was at the back or only fighting for points, without ever having the opportunity to compete for podium positions. Their best Constructors’ Championship result during his tenure was P5 in 2018.

“With what we had, you could still fight for being seventh, eighth or ninth – but you couldn’t fight for podiums without the same weapons as the other guys,” he added.

“Doing that in the long-term is not what I want to do in life. I don’t want to be seventh again. I’ve done that. I want to be able to fight, to battle at the front.”

But Steiner didn’t rule out the possibility of returning to the paddock in the future if the timing and opportunity is right.