’Both’ Haas drivers set for new F1 contracts
"I have a very good relationship with both"
Haas appears to be heading towards new contracts for "both" of its current drivers.
With Haas owner Gene Haas making a rare visit to the Formula 1 paddock this weekend, it is clear that both he and team boss Gunther Steiner are ready to ink a new deal with Nico Hulkenberg.
So with a question mark still hanging over Kevin Magnussen’s race seat for 2024, Steiner told the Spanish broadcaster DAZN at the Hungaroring: "They are both good boys.
"I have a very good relationship with both, both personally and professionally," he added. "It’s a lot of fun working with them.
"Normally, I am more frustrated than they are. They are the ones who have to encourage me and have to take care of me," Steiner smiled.
Indeed, while German Hulkenberg has often shone brightly in qualifying this season, the races have been a different story.
"It’s difficult this year to know how well we will do," Steiner said. "Sometimes the car goes well and we don’t know why and sometimes it doesn’t go well and we don’t know why.
"Our main problem is the rear tyres - we overheat them. We are working to have it resolved after the summer break."
With Hulkenberg and Magnussen looking likely to stay in 2024, Steiner doesn’t hide that he thinks there is a better driver in the field - Fernando Alonso.
"I have always said that as a driver, Fernando is a master," he said. "I think he could race without engineers and strategists. He is the best of them all.
"If Fernando were five or seven years younger, he would be the most complete," Steiner added. "The only thing that works against him is his age.
"Below him are Hamilton and Verstappen, who are also very good. Max is in a great moment both in his career and in his life. He’s riding the wave."