Steiner: "Exaggerated" Mazepin-Schumacher rivalry is not personal

Gunther Steiner feels the rivalry between Haas Formula 1 drivers Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher is not personal and "exaggerated" by the team's current performance ahead of talks at Monza.

Steiner: "Exaggerated" Mazepin-Schumacher rivalry is not personal

Steiner is set to meet with Mazepin and Schumacher on Thursday ahead of the Italian Grand Prix after two incidents between them at Zandvoort last weekend.

Mazepin said that Schumacher ruined his qualifying by breaking team protocol and passing him on their out lap, but Schumacher claimed he had been given permission to make the overtake.

In the race, Schumacher felt "very angry" about Mazepin's late defensive move on the main straight at the end of the first lap, and acknowledged there was "room for improvement" in their relationship. Mazepin himself said there were "no problems" with Schumacher.

Addressing the situation ahead of the Thursday meeting at Monza, Haas F1 boss Steiner made clear his commitment to resolving the matter to prevent any future issues emerging.

"What happened last week, we had a meeting on Sunday, we will have another meeting today," Steiner said.

"We'll work on it and get that problem sorted as well, as we did with a lot of other things.

"I just want to make sure that the two guys get a good understanding of how they should race, and that they can learn to avoid the situations that don't help anybody, the least it helps them."

Steiner added: "I don't really care what they do in their private life, if they are friends or not. But on the race track, they need to perform for the team.

"If you take them both not together, they all agree with that. We just have to find an agreement when they're both in the room. That is what we are working on. There are a lot of team-mates which are not good friends.

"We just need to make it work. They are young, and they need to understand that, and then they can move on together in the same team."

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal, Haas F1

Guenther Steiner, Team Principal, Haas F1

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

Haas currently sits at the bottom of the F1 constructors' championship after failing to score any points this year, but is treating 2021 as a transition season, opting against car development so it can place full focus on next year's regulations.

It has left Mazepin and Schumacher only racing each other most of the time at the back of the field, something Steiner felt was fanning the flames of the rivalry.

"I don't think it's personal, I think it's circumstances," Steiner said.

"As I continue to say, we are fighting with nobody else than between the two of them. Therefore, this is exaggerated, this fight. There is nothing else to fight.

"If you had been in the mix with another three or four cars, you wouldn't see this, because if you do this move to not your team-mate, or if you race hard with not your team-mate, that doesn't make a difference. But if it's with your team-mate, it's almost personal.

"But they have nobody else to fight, so that is what they focus on. That seems to be, in my opinion, one of the issues there. There is nothing else around it."

shares
comments

Related video

Vettel ‘not worried’ about Aston Martin F1 future, expects news soon
Previous article

Vettel ‘not worried’ about Aston Martin F1 future, expects news soon

Next article

Hulkenberg sees no chance of making F1 comeback in 2022

Hulkenberg sees no chance of making F1 comeback in 2022
Load comments
How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series Plus

How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series

The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a race packed full of incident as Formula 1 2021's title contenders repeatedly clashed on track. Lewis Hamilton won out over Max Verstappen to level the scores heading into next weekend's Abu Dhabi finale, as Jeddah turned F1 into a drama series

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance Plus

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance

Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2021
How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes Plus

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1
Dec 3, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Plus

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Plus

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Plus

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Autosport's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer explains

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated Plus

Why Ferrari is sure its long-term Leclerc investment will be vindicated

Humble yet blisteringly quick, Charles Leclerc is the driver Ferrari sees as its next
 world champion, and a rightful heir to the greats of Ferrari’s past – even though, by the team’s own admission, he’s not the finished article yet. Here's why it is confident that the 24-year-old can be the man to end a drought stretching back to 2008

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2021
The downside to F1's show and tell proposal Plus

The downside to F1's show and tell proposal

Technology lies at the heart of the F1 story and it fascinates fans, which is why the commercial rights holder plans to compel teams to show more of their ‘secrets’. STUART CODLING fears this will encourage techno-quackery…

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2021