SportF1Steiner has not decided the Haas drivers: "Everything is...

Steiner has not decided the Haas drivers: "Everything is open"

Haas has in its ranks Kevin Magnussen, with a multi-year contract that ensures his place in 2023, and Mick Schumacher, who is in his second season and whose record is released at the end of it.

Early last week, McLaren announced that Daniel Ricciardo would be leaving the team at the end of the year, making the eight-time grand prix winner an attractive free agent. However, Haas boss Guenther Steiner believes it is a mistake to make assumptions about who the team might be interested in next year.

“We all know who’s on the market, and if you now ask me for the next 15 minutes ‘have you talked to this guy and this guy?’ I either say no or yes,” the Italian said.

“I talk to everyone. We see what we are going to do. Everyone assumes that Mick [Schumacher] will not be here next year, and that is not true either. At the moment, everything is open.”

“We haven’t made any decisions about what we’re going to do next year with the drivers. Obviously we’re talking, we’re checking in. That’s my duty to the team and its owner [Gene Haas].”

Steiner said team owner Gene Haas will attend the next two races at Zandvoort and Monza, giving them a chance to sit down and discuss possible driver options for 2023.

The director of the Americans said that the shortlist for 2023 was in “single digits” and indicated that the team, if they chose to replace Schumacher, would not opt for a debutant. Likewise, he also made it clear that the decision will not depend on the financial support that the pilot can provide.

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal, Haas F1

He also confirmed that Ferrari, the team’s motorist, has nothing to say about who Magnussen’s partner will be.

Ricciardo has little chance of staying in F1 next year, and has already said he would rather take a sabbatical than race in another championship.

Although Steiner said he had been in touch with the Australian “a few weeks ago” to “keep up to date with what’s going on in the industry, like all the other team principals”, he explained that it was a mistake to think that Haas would definitely launch into by Ricciardo just because he was available.

“Everyone thinks now that Danny [is available] we have to get him. Can’t we just maybe not want Daniel?” said. “Why do you think he has left McLaren? We have to be careful. It’s not just about what we’ve done, it’s about what we can do.”

Former Alfa Romeo driver Antonio Giovinazzi will participate in two free practice sessions with Haas between now and the end of the season. The team boss revealed that this was agreed with Ferrari, and that they could consider the Italian for 2023 “because he has the superlicense”.

Schumacher scored his first F1 points at Silverstone, before the summer break, by finishing eighth, and in Austria a week later he improved on that mark with a sixth place finish. For this reason, Steiner considered that Schumacher “did very well in the last quarter before the summer break” and that he did not need to be told what he had to do to keep his seat for a third season.

“If he does well, he’ll be fine, there’s nothing new to say,” Steiner said. “He knows that. I don’t need to tell him. He’s a driver, he knows what he has to do and what everybody in a racing team has to do: perform and do your job.”

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