Steiner reprimanded for calling F1 stewards "laymen"

Haas F1 team principal Guenther Steiner has been reprimanded for referring to the Monaco Grand Prix stewards as “laymen”. 
Guenther Steiner (ITA) Haas F1 Team Prinicipal. Formula 1 Testing, Sakhir, Bahrain, Day Three.
Guenther Steiner (ITA) Haas F1 Team Prinicipal. Formula 1 Testing,…

Unhappy with the decision to give Nico Hulkenberg a time penalty for his aggressive opening lap overtake on Williams driver Logan Sargeant in Monaco, Steiner called for full-time professional stewards to be used. 

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"Every professional sport has got professionals being referees and stuff like this,” Steiner said. 

"F1 is one of the biggest sports in the world, and we still have laymen deciding on the fate of people who invest millions in their careers. And it's always a discussion because there's no consistency. 

"I think we need to step it up. I think it's now time. I think we're discussing this for years and years and we always go back to this." 

Steiner also described F1’s rotating group of FIA-appointed stewards as “laymen”. 

That comment did not go down well with the FIA, who summoned Steiner to a meeting in the Spanish Grand Prix paddock on Saturday. 

Having differed a decision to Sunday morning, the stewards ruled Steiner had violated article 12.2.1.k of the International Sporting Code, which relates to disrespectful and damaging words or actions. 

“Mr Steiner’s word ‘laymen’ and his reference to other sports having ‘professional’ personnel could be, and indeed were, perceived to cause offence and in our view reasonably did cause offence not only to the stewards in Monaco but also to other FIA personnel and many motorsport volunteers,” the stewards said. 

In a statement, Steiner said: “Yesterday (Saturday June 3) I attended a Stewards Hearing concerning comments I made during my press conference last Thursday (June 1). 

“I expressed to the Stewards my disappointment and disagreement with the decision taken by the Monaco Stewards last weekend. The Stewards informed me that they had no issue with people disagreeing with decisions but were more concerned about the interpretation that had been placed on some of my comments.

“I explained to the stewards that I had not intended to offend anyone and that my use of certain words could have been open to misinterpretation or misunderstood by some people.

“I told the Stewards that I apologised if my statements were misunderstood or caused hurt to anyone as that was not my intention. I repeat that apology here.”

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