Claim made that Steiner was trying to cash in on F1 fame at Haas

Red Bull’s Helmet Marko has claimed that Guenther Steiner became a “victim of his popularity” before his departure from the Haas F1 team. 
Guenther Steiner (ITA) Haas F1 Team Prinicipal. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 9, Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Canada,
Guenther Steiner (ITA) Haas F1 Team Prinicipal. Formula 1 World…

Last week Haas announced Steiner, who had led the US-based team for the past decade, was leaving his role with immediate effect ahead of the 2024 season. 

Amid speculation of a disagreement between Steiner and Haas team owner Gene Haas, Marko says he heard a rumour that the Italian was trying to cash in on his celebrity status as a star of Netflix’s Drive to Survive series. 

“Let’s put it this way: anyone who becomes too popular through a documentary like Netflix tends to take off. But if you fly too high too fast, you also crash faster,” Marko told 

“I’ve only heard that he wanted to convert his popularity into shares in the team. And that no longer appealed to owner Gene Haas.

“It is also the case in our sport that the team always takes precedence over the individual. Steiner became a victim of his popularity.”

Speaking for the first time since his shock exit at the Autosport International Show on Saturday, Steiner admitted he did not see the exit coming.

Asked if he was ever thought his new-found popularity might become a problem within Haas, Steiner told Sky F1: "Not really, but thinking back now, it could have.

"But in the end that celebrity gave the team a lot of exposure, brought in very good sponsors like MoneyGram because they liked that because they could use that [profile].

"There are always positives and negatives to any deal so maybe there were some positives and somebody brought up the negatives.

"These are things you cannot always plan for because I was not out there trying to look for celebrity. It happened to me and only the people who know me know that, so I'm ok with that.”

Steiner added: "I didn't get up in the morning to be a celebrity. I get up in the morning to work. But I think it worked a lot in favour of the team because without that maybe it would have been closed before."

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