Former Team Principal Tipped Ideal Candidate For Haas

F1
by Adam OndrikTuesday, 23 January 2024 at 15:00
szafnauer otmar alpine
Former F1 driver Ralf Schumacher suggested a person who he thinks would fit well as a candidate for the spot alongside the team principal at Haas F1 team.
After eight years of podium drought and struggling at the back of the grid, Gene Haas recently decided to make significant changes in his team. He replaced Guenther Steiner with Ayao Komatsu in the position of the team principal.
The owner was clear he wanted somebody from within the team to handle the position of the team pricnipal. However, Komatsu will focus mainly on engineering, and he will need the aid of someone else.
Therefore, Haas is now on the lookout for a chief operating officer who would help Komatsu with the other part of the team principal role. Ralf Schumacher identified a man who would suit this role, as he told Formel1.de:

"Otmar is someone who is well-known in Formula 1 and who also has expertise. One thing is technical expertise, but the other thing is to go out and look for good minds, sometimes at universities."

Otmar Szafnauer is a team principal who is also used to working in teams with restricted budgets. The 59-year-old has most recently been part of Alpine, which he departed in the middle of 2023.

"Having this foresight and generating new people to take the team forward is a skill that I trust Otmar to have."

There is also another experienced former team principal, who is Steiner's great friend, Mattia Binotto. He led Scuderia Ferrari in the years 2019-2022.
The Italian team principal came quite close to beating Red Bull during the 2022 season but decided to step down when high expectations weren't met. Schumacher could not imagine Binnotto going to Haas as he added:

"I can't imagine Mattia Binotto doing that. He's also more associated with Audi, but I don't quite see how that fits in with Andreas Seidl. I'm curious about that."