Haas F1 team boss Guenther Steiner is sick of everyone badmouthing his boy Esteban Gutierrez.
Esteban Gutierrez has recently made headlines, but not for reasons he’d want to. He never made podium or even gave the top drivers a run for the money, but he did irritate them a good deal on a personal level. The first thing he did was not shut up about Hamilton flipping him the bird because he failed to move aside quickly enough for the Briton. His outburst attracted the ire of Daniel Ricciardo, who ripped him a new one for ignoring blue flags. So no, he’s not very popular at the water cooler at the moment. But El Jefe Steiner has had quite enough of everyone dumping on his driver and is sternly reprimanding his critics.
“I don’t think he’s as bad as they think, but once you get one penalty for sure now Ricciardo was pissed because he couldn’t get past him. But they have to realise one day they will be lapped and then they will [see] how they feel about it. If somebody says you need to get out of the way, you cannot just jump away.
“It’s like ‘oh, he’s the worst guy at it’ just the second time he does it. I think it’s the opposite, normally he’s the best guy to get out of the way. Now he was just unlucky twice not to give someone fresh air all of a sudden when they want it, so for sure he jumps in it.
“Would it have changed anything for Ricciardo? I don’t know, I guess not. The world is not perfect, live with it. For sure if he had lost a position, I understand he is pissed, but how many seconds was he behind?”
We think that the issue everyone is having with him has less to do with him blocking progress and more to do with the fact that he’s outraged at their outrage.
If he’d just admit he had his part to play in the matter and moved on, this would likely have blown over faster than it has. Instead, he’s insisted that Hamilton owes him an apology and has playing the wounded victim for weeks. It’s an unappealing persona in any context and honestly, we’d be tempted to pile on him too.