mobile app bar

Toto Wolff’s F1 Frenemy Shares Anecdote That Changes Perception About Mercedes Boss

Somin Bhattacharjee

Toto Wolff's F1 Frenemy Shares Anecdote That Changes Perception About Mercedes Boss

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff was believed to have had a rift with former Haas boss Guenther Steiner, a misconception that the latter cleared recently. Steiner believes that the respect they have for each other makes them get along well, even though there were times when their relationship took a hit.

Appearing on The Red Flags Podcast, Steiner was asked if Toto Wolff ever felt jealous of the fact that he was more popular. Steiner instantly denied it. Instead, the Italian-American quipped that Wolff is “richer” than him.

“I don’t think it bothers him. I’ve got quite a good relationship with him as much as we sometimes get against each other and we have good fun.”, said Steiner.

Steiner revealed that when Haas fired him at the end of the 2023 season, Wolff was the first person to call him. He understood the environment Steiner had to deal with towards the end of his tenure with the Kannapolis-based outfit, which led to the hosts asking the 59-year-old, “You think he has his own Gene?”

This question was a direct reference to Steiner’s troubled relationship with Haas’ owner Gene Haas. Towards the end, the trust between them completely broke, and Haas appointed Ayao Komatsu in his place ahead of the 2024 season.

Steiner had to deal with constant scrutiny and pressure from Gene Haas, despite not having enough resources to work with as per reports.

Answering the question, however, Steiner insists that Mercedes is a big company, where, “the board is a big Gene.”

Toto Wolff has to deal with a “Gene” of his own

Mercedes is one of the biggest teams in F1, and the company invests a lot of money into its project, which has made it very successful in the past.

Guenther Steiner feels that the criticisms Wolff has to deal with at the Brackley-based outfit are a lot more sophisticated relative to his experience at Haas. “There is a big amount of money going around [at Mercedes],” Steiner adds.

The ex-Haas Team Principal also reveals that Toto Wolff owns a third of Mercedes’ F1 team, which makes his work more personal, but also adds to his advantage when dealing with the other investors.

That isn’t to say that Wolff does not face the pressure. Since hitting a slump in 2022, Mercedes has fallen from grace and has become a team stuck in the midfield. The Silver Arrows have big ambitions, so it is Wolff’s responsibility to get them back to where they belong.

Post Edited By:Aishwary Gaonkar

About the author

Somin Bhattacharjee

Somin Bhattacharjee


Somin Bhattacharjee is an F1 editor at The SportsRush and has written more than 2000 articles. He holds a bachelor's degree in business administration and considers sports to be a part of his life. Somin has been a fan of Scuderia Ferrari since 2010 and his favorite driver is none another than the legendary Fernando Alonso. Other than longing for a Ferrari Championship win once again, Somin spends his free time playing football and basketball.

Read more from Somin Bhattacharjee

Share this article