Haas team principal Guenther Steiner admits the expenses caused by rookie drivers so far in 2021 have exceeded his own expectations.
Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher were selected for this season with Haas hoping the pair will build experience before the team can deliver a more competitive car under new regulations in 2022. Steiner says that while he was prepared for the pair to have accidents this season, he has been surprised at the cost of some of the crash damage from both drivers so far.
“It has been very expensive — don’t ask me for a number because I will not tell you a number, but it was very expensive,” Steiner told RACER. “We knew with two rookies that it would be expensive, but I think it beat even my expectations at the moment.
“What I say is when you fight, when you do it on a qualifying lap, OK, you’re trying whatever. When you do it in free practice, then I think the same expense hurts more. You know what I mean? Spending the money hurts more when you do it in FP3 than qualifying and you fight for something, or in a race when you fight for something.”
Steiner suggested Schumacher should have learned from his FP3 crash at the Monaco Grand Prix that ruled him out of qualifying when he repeated the error in Hungary (pictured above), but he says he never rushes discussions with the drivers about their mistakes.
“I’m sure we have to address it. I’m not afraid to address it, it’s just there’s a time and a place. These things, they don’t need to get forced.
“I always sit back and think about my own things when things go wrong … When you reflect on it, after it happened, normally you get through your own wisdom — I need to digest this. And then when we speak I need a solution for that.”