“He’s a very different person” - New Haas boss vows not to be ‘another Steiner’

New Haas F1 team principal Ayao Komatsu has insisted he’s not “trying to be Guenther Steiner” as he looks to fill the shoes of the charismatic Italian.
Ayao Komatsu (JPN) Haas F1 Team Race Engineer in the FIA Press Conference. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 17, Japanese
Ayao Komatsu (JPN) Haas F1 Team Race Engineer in the FIA Press Conference…

Last week, Haas announced the shock departure of Steiner as team boss, promoting Komatsu into the role for the upcoming season.

Komatsu has a wealth of F1 experience, particularly with Haas, joining the team in 2016 alongside Romain Grosjean, who he engineered at Lotus.

Looking at the year ahead, Komatsu vowed to be himself and won’t necessarily try to replicate Steiner.

“Of course, I’m not trying to be Guenther Steiner!” he told the official F1 website. 

“He’s a very different person. We got on, honestly, really, really well. We respect each other, we respect each other’s positions and job roles during work and off work as well. 

“We used to go to dinner quite a lot as well over a race weekend – again, not to talk about work but because we got on pretty well. But I’m not here to replace Guenther Steiner as a character.


“He’s a very different character, as you know, and he has got very different strengths and weaknesses to me. I’m not trying to be someone else and Gene knows that and if Gene wanted a Guenther Steiner replacement in that way, he would have appointed somebody else. 

“So I understand that Gene wants something different and I will try to be the best version of myself rather than trying to be somebody else.”

Komatsu did joke, like his predecessor, he does have a tendency to swear.

“This is not something I’m proud to say!” he added. “My language is not great, I swear way too much, but, again, I try not to do that.”

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