Guenther Steiner, haas, Albert Park, 2023

Steiner summoned to FIA hearing following criticism of Monaco stewards

2023 Spanish Grand Prix

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Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has been summoned to the stewards in relation to comments he made to the media on Thursday at the Circuit de Catalunya.

The FIA confirmed Steiner is to meet them at 2:30pm local time at the track due to an “alleged breach of articles 12.2.1.c, 12.2.1.f and 12.2.1.k of the FIA International Sporting Code during a media conference” two days ago.

The FIA has not stated what Steiner said which has caused concern. The articles he may have breached refer to “acts prejudicial to the interests” of a competition and causing “moral injury or loss” to the FIA.

While speaking to media including RaceFans on Thursday, Steiner criticised the stewards of the previous race in Monaco after his driver Nico Hulkenberg was given a five-second time penalty for an incident on the first lap of the race.

Felix Holter, who was one of the stewards who issued the penalty and is serving in the same capacity this weekend, has recused himself from the hearing on Steiner’s comments due to the potential for a conflict of interest. His place has been taken by Matthew Selley.

Steiner referred to the stewards as ‘laymen’ during his briefing and called for F1 to introduce a permanent staff which attend all races to act as referees.

“F1 is one of the biggest sports in the world and we still have laymans deciding on the fate of people which invest millions in their careers,” said Steiner on Thursday. “And it’s always a discussion because there’s no consistency. Again, I don’t want to blame any particular person on this, but if you’re not all there all the time…

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“This is like a job [but] it’s not even a job, because in a job you could get sacked, because you get paid. And if you do a bad job, you get sacked. You cannot get sacked because you don’t get paid. I think we need to step it up.”

Steiner’s comments follow extensive changes to race management by the FIA in the wake of the furore over the conclusion to the 2021 world championship. Race director Michael Masi was removed from his position after breaking the rules by arranging a last-lap restart without allowing all cars to un-lap themselves, which was widely regarded to have influenced the outcome of the world championship.

Since then the FIA has created its Remote Operations Centre to support race control and the stewards and expanded its race management team to ease the pressure on the race director.

In 2021 Red Bull team principal Christian Horner was given an official warning after accusing a “rogue marshal” of incorrectly waving a yellow flag and causing Max Verstappen to be penalised.

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2023 Spanish Grand Prix

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Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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23 comments on “Steiner summoned to FIA hearing following criticism of Monaco stewards”

  1. Lol, like after the 2019 Russian GP, iirc.

    1. Estimated reading time (for article): 2 minutes, 18 seconds 🤔

      1. this comment is under investigation

        1. Hopefully the investigation won’t be as long as some the stewards had in recent years, like 3h to decide a penalty or not!

  2. 5 penalty points to Guenther

  3. Again with this “breaking the rules” stuff; the stewards heard Mercedes’ complaint, and made their decisions, confirming the result and rejecting Mercedes’ objections. Remember: the stewards are always right. Always. All the time. If anyone feels different, they’re welcome to explain that to… the stewards! Now that’s a slick system if ever there was one.

    1. Coventry Climax
      3rd June 2023, 22:26

      That’s exactly like how Russia is run.

      The FIA calls it a ‘Special Sprint Operation’, and you’ll get sentenced to a remote prison camp if you call it what it actually is; cash grabbin’ cow dung.

      Doesn’t matter if he’s right or not, but I hope Steiner doesn’t budge and takes the fine or whatever sentence it is they’ll bestow on him, with his head held high.

  4. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    3rd June 2023, 13:20

    The FIA is a joke – it’s not about appearing strong after you make ridiculous calls. The whole point is to avoid making ludicrous calls. How can they fix the issue when they don’t even understand what’s wrong?

    causing “moral injury or loss” to the FIA.

    Wow, what would the FIA have to pay to Hamilton and Mercedes for 2021?

    1. Wow, what would the FIA have to pay to Hamilton and Mercedes for 2021?

      About $150 million, which is about what the constructor’s champion gets.

    2. Coventry Climax
      3rd June 2023, 22:33

      Haha, ‘moral loss’. That’s hard to achieve when there’s no moral understanding to begin with – in the name of impartiality.

      They’ll probably decide to pay the stewards twice as much. Since they’re not paid now, twice zero is still zero, but they’ll still claim to have brought a solution in making it more professional.

    3. A big loud raspberry, of course

  5. Electroball76
    3rd June 2023, 13:25

    So pay the stewards and make the team bosses work for free. Problem solved!

  6. It should be noted that, whilst Steiner has criticised the FIA’s approach to stewarding and said that the sport should adopt IndyCar’s approach of a fixed panel of stewards, Jay Frye, who is responsible for IndyCar, mentioned not that long ago that IndyCar was actually considering making moves towards a system more akin to what Formula 1 uses – i.e. rotating the role around different stewards to evaluate a wider range of opinions on whether certain events should, or should not, receive a penalty.

    1. Yellow Baron
      3rd June 2023, 16:59

      That would still be different to F1. A set group of rotating stewards Vs f1 which has random people from the country holding the race acting as a steward for one weekend.
      Very different

      1. So, you are aware that every race weekend has a group of, I believe 4 stewards, 2 of whom are FIA certified stewards from a rotating pool, one is a former racing driver, and one is a local delegated official…?

        Your comment suggests that you think it’s still 2008.

        1. Yellow Baron
          3rd June 2023, 21:12

          You just repeated what I was saying. Local official doesn’t mean rotating steward does it?

  7. There is more freedom and consistent behaviour even in Russia than in F1. I quit watching F1 races after 2021 final GP marasmus.

    1. If you quit watching, go away. Your opinions are irrelevant.

      Further, comparing the inconsistencies in stewarding with a regime that occasionally hands out free polonium and drafts their citizens so they can invade neighboring nations, targeting civilians and infrastructure, and risking nuclear fallout for Eastern Europe through their megalomaniacal desire to rebuild the USSR makes your opinions highly inflammatory and even more grounds for you to Just Go Away.

      1. Coventry Climax
        3rd June 2023, 22:39

        Although you’re largely right about Russia, it still does not give you the right to tell someone off and/or deny him the right of an opinion. Actually, that is what happens in Russia.

  8. Facts&Stats
    3rd June 2023, 16:58

    ‘laymen’ can be seen as a bit offensive, but ‘amateurs’ is factually correct.

  9. I think all the F1 stewards should be priests.

    1. Coventry Climax
      3rd June 2023, 22:46

      How would that help? They’d probably be in church, come racing time on sunday.
      Furthermore, nothing sensible has ever come out of people with a religious obsession.

      50 thousand people believing the same thing is a sect.
      50 million people believing the same thing is a religion? Sure.

  10. I’m not a fan of steiner at all, but I agree with him about the comment he made about the stewards, I noticed it when he made it and was surprised it hadn’t been reported here yet.

Comments are closed.