Kevin Magnussen is heading to Haas with the recommendation of many in the F1 paddock, including those at his current team Renault.
That is the claim of Haas team boss Gunther Steiner, explaining the decision to pick the Dane to replace Esteban Gutierrez for 2017.
“Everyone knows that we spoke with Kevin already last year,” Steiner told the Danish broadcaster TV2 in Abu Dhabi.
“At the time we chose Romain Grosjean because he had more experience. But now he has run through this season and we have been able to see what he delivers.”
Magnussen has said he got a one-year offer to stay at Renault, but internal politicking and the promise of a two-year Haas contract motivated him to switch.
Steiner said: “I spoke with people at Renault, the engineers and technical staff, and they are really happy to work with him.”
He is also quoted by the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet: “Many people in the industry regard Kevin very highly. Other drivers, other team bosses, other team owners. He is highly respected.
“It is people with experience who said to us: Look at Magnussen,” Steiner added.
Steiner said he thinks Magnussen will enjoy Haas’ no-politics, no-nonsense approach to racing.
“From the time he said ‘Yes I want to change’ it took ten days. It was simple,” he revealed.
“I think he got a good feeling for us. We are a small and simple race team. We race with no politics. Gene Haas owns the team, I control the operations and there is no need for politics.
“My impression is that Kevin likes that approach, because he loves to race and we are racers.”