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F1 news

Steiner praises 'mature' F1 prospect

Could we see this F1 prospect replace Pietro Fittipaldi as Haas' reserve driver in 2024?

To news overview © XPBimages

Haas F1 Team Principal Guenther Steiner has praised Oliver Bearman for his mature approach to testing with the team during the 2023 Formula 1 season.

Bearman ran in two FP1 sessions for Haas during the 2023 season, and then took part in the Abu Dhabi post-season test.

The British driver, who was a standout in last year's Formula 2 campaign, also undertook some simulator duties with the team.

When asked about how easily Bearman managed to get to grips with F1 machinery, Steiner told media, including RacingNews365: "He's 18, but even if he got into an F1 car in 2021 it's still early, you know? He was very mature for an 18 year old. But not trying to be mature.

"Sometimes young drivers, they have got this wisdom which somebody tried to teach them. But no, it was actually himself.

"He was very chilled out about that as well what he was doing, so I had fun with him."

Haas' new reserve driver?

Haas must currently find a new reserve driver for the 2024 season, after Pietro Fittipaldi signed to Rahal Letterman Lanigan racing in IndyCar.

Questions have been raised over whether Bearman could take on the role, given his links to the Ferrari Driver Academy and mostly being on hand at the majority of races due to his F2 commitments.

"I don't know what they [Ferrari] are doing. But I think you always need to have a plan if nobody's around," said Steiner.

"Because if it hits you, if you put somebody in the car who doesn't know anything it's not good."

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