Dec.5 (GMM) Gene Haas, F1's newest team owner, has admitted to keeping a sharp eye on the turmoil at Maranello.
This year, after securing a place on the 2016 grid, Nascar co-owner Haas agreed a deal with Ferrari to receive customer engines and "all related technical services".Haas Automation, Haas' leading machine tool company, also became an on-car sponsor of the fabled Italian team.But since the agreements were made, it has been all change at Ferrari as the marque reacted to its poor start to the all-new 'power unit' era.President Luca di Montezemolo and team boss Marco Mattiacci, for example, have gone, which may be a concern to Haas."That's a good point," Haas admitted to Sports Business Daily."I don't know. I think that the higher-ups know what they're doing. I hope we didn't have any influence over them losing their jobs."The interviewer, Leigh Diffey, admitted that over lunch Haas confessed that "whoever I spoke to (at Ferrari) got fired. I better stop speaking to people."Haas commented: "There's a lot of pressure on Ferrari. Ferrari is obviously a marquee car builder, and formula one is their marquee racing series. And they want to win."There's just a lot of pressure there. I have to respect that."There is also big pressure on Haas, who are building a modest team from scratch and intending to be the only competitor without its main headquarters in Europe.And Haas' building phase also coincides with a period of great turmoil in formula one, with backmarkers Marussia and Caterham going out of business and other small teams struggling for survival."There are a lot of pitfalls in formula one," he admitted."We've seen a lot of teams have a lot of problems. There are money issues."There's a lot of rancour in the troops out there as far as what we're hearing. I look at it as a challenge. I've been to some formula one races. I've met the people. I like them. They're good people."But Haas also admitted that the task of building a car, even for 2016, is almost "overwhelming"."If you get it wrong," he said, "it's a disaster."
comments powered by Disqus
If you are using Internet Explorer, make sure you set your document mode to IE 8 (Alt+8) or via F12 to see and add comments