Formula 1

Guenther Steiner Sheds Light on Haas F1 Team’s Struggles Linked to Ferrari Engine Controversy

In a revealing insight, Guenther Steiner, the former Haas F1 team principal, attributed the team’s performance decline to the controversial Ferrari engine saga of 2018-2019. His recent statements have reignited discussions about Ferrari’s compliance with FIA regulations.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Guenther Steiner’s Departure and Revelations: Recently relieved from his role as Haas team principal, Steiner opened up about the struggles the team faced, linking them to Ferrari’s engine issues. His successor, Ayao Komatsu, inherits a team grappling with the aftermath of these performance challenges.
  2. The Ferrari Engine Saga: At the heart of the controversy lies Ferrari’s engine performance during 2018-2019. Allegations surfaced regarding Ferrari potentially bypassing fuel flow sensor limitations, leading to a secretive settlement with the FIA. The lack of transparency in this settlement has been a subject of significant debate.
  3. Impact on Haas’s Performance: Steiner highlighted the stark contrast in Haas’s performance – from a commendable fifth in the Constructors’ Standings in 2018 to a disappointing ninth the following year. This decline coincided with Ferrari’s engine performance issues, suggesting a direct impact on Haas’s competitiveness.

In a candid discussion at the Autosport International Show, Guenther Steiner, the former Haas team principal, brought to light the underlying issues that contributed to Haas F1 Team’s recent struggles. His tenure, which recently ended with Gene Haas’s decision to replace him with Ayao Komatsu, was marked by a mix of success and challenges. One of the most significant challenges, as Steiner pointed out, was the controversial “Ferrari engine saga.”

This saga refers to a period when Ferrari, Haas’s engine supplier, was under scrutiny for potentially bypassing fuel flow sensor limitations, thereby gaining an unfair advantage. The Scuderia’s subsequent private settlement with the FIA raised eyebrows due to its secretive nature and the lack of a clear stance on the legality of the engines used.

Steiner emphasized the impact of this controversy on Haas’s performance. He noted, “When we started, finishing eighth in the first and second season, for a new team [that] never happened before. Finishing fifth in the third season, didn’t happen many times before. They fell back in 2019. There was a reason there as well that has to be explained – that was the Ferrari engine saga year. And people should look into that one.”

This saga not only cast a shadow over Ferrari but also significantly impacted its customers, namely Haas and Alfa Romeo. Haas, which had shown promising results in 2018, experienced a sudden decline in 2019, which Steiner correlates directly to the engine issues. This revelation brings into perspective the interconnected nature of Formula 1 teams and their suppliers, highlighting how technical and regulatory controversies can have far-reaching effects on the sport’s competitive landscape.

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