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How Juan Pablo Montoya influenced Magnussen's Haas move

How Juan Pablo Montoya influenced Magnussen's Haas move

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How Juan Pablo Montoya influenced Magnussen's Haas move

How Juan Pablo Montoya influenced Magnussen's Haas move

Juan Pablo Montoya was the first to tell Haas boss Gunther Steiner about Kevin Magnussen's talent. Magnussen joined the American team after stints at McLaren and Renault, but Haas boss Steiner says he first heard about the Danish driver from former F1 race-winner Montoya.

Remarkably, 2018 was the first year in which Magnussen raced in the same competition for the same team as the previous 12 months in his entire racing career.

And he certainly seemed to revel in the consistency, finishing ninth in the drivers' championship, with 11 top-10 finishes, and scoring his first fastest lap in F1 at the Singapore GP.

The campaign has set Magnussen out as a driver to watch in F1's midfield, but his Haas switch may not have even come about without the intervention of Colombia's most successful F1 driver.

"Kevin is friends with Juan Pablo," Steiner told BT newspaper.

"One day when Juan Pablo and I were in Mexico, he asked me 'Have you looked at Kevin Magnussen? He is very good'.

"I knew his father but when I met Kevin, he asked where I had heard of him and he told me he doesn't know Montoya at all!"

In the new F1 documentary on Netflix, Steiner emerges as a particularly tough team boss.

Steiner agrees: "I tell him [Magnussen] what I think, even if he doesn't want to hear it.

"It's part of life. If I am dissatisfied I say it, and if they have anything to say, they can say it also."

For instance, Steiner was furious after the botched pitstops in Melbourne last year.

"We have trained hard and we practiced every day while they built the car at Dallara," he said. "We will do better this year."

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