Haas F1 boss told sacked driver Nikita Mazepin "that’s why people hate you"

Haas Formula One team principal Guenther Steiner launched a brutal outburst at sacked driver Nikita Mazepin at a race last season.

Former Russian driver Mazepin was dumped by Haas this week after the F1 team confirmed it had dropped both he and billionaire father Dmitry’s company Uralkali as the team’s primary sponsor.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine had already prompted Motorsport UK to ban all Russian and Belarusian racers from competing at the British Grand Prix for 2022, before Haas decided to axe him completely.

It has since emerged directly from Mazepin that Haas boss Steiner failed to warn him beforehand, with the Russian openly stating he was “disappointed” with the way it was handled.

And the full extent of their strained relationship has now been laid bare for all to see in the latest season of Netflix’s Drive to Survive series, which covers the 2021 season.

Amid all the intensity of a race shown in one episode, Steiner said: “F*****g hell, that’s why people hate you,” after Mazepin gave his engineers a hard time and was uncooperative during a debrief.

Steiner then gave Mazepin a firm dressing down, saying: “First of all I want to tell you that we really try to help you, but you need to help me as well.

“When you speak on the radio, do not be aggressive – you don’t achieve anything.

“They (the engineers) are afraid of you. You are not a p***y. I’m not saying you need to be loved. I’m just saying to be very neutral. Not being ‘Oh this is f*****g s**t’. That doesn’t help anyone.

Do you think Haas were right to axe Nikita Mazepin ahead of the 2022 season? Let us know in the comments section.

“If we are not united as a team then we’re all going to s**t. We are getting you closer to Mick [Schumacher].

“I know that is the f***ing frustration, but there is not a magic thing for this car and I think Mick can deal with it better.”

Mazepin was ridiculed by sections of the F1 support for his poor performances throughout the 2021 season.

The controversial 23-year-old finished 21st out of the drivers on the grid while struggling to get a grip on an admittedly poor car, prompting many to call for his sacking.

And in the end they received their wish with Mazepin being unceremoniously axed, despite being willing to race under a neutral non-Russian flag.

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Mazepin ended his silence on Wednesday by writing on social media: “While I understand the difficulties, the ruling from FlA plus my ongoing willingness to accept the conditions proposed in order to continue were completely ignored and no process was followed in this unilateral step.”

He added: “In my previous relationships with Gunther, which I rated a very good one and respected him as a man, very much so, I have been used to believe 101 per cent in his words, He’s a team principal, and if he says something it normally happens, or it always happens.

“But I have not heard any information from the team ever since this happened. And I learned about the firing of me the same time as it had been released to the press.

“I’d like to think I’m a young man at 23, and I was not ready for it. I didn’t receive any hint or any support to say that 'this is a decision we’ve taken, it’s going to go live in 15 minutes, just be ready for it.'"

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