New Amer­i­can team granted 2015 F1 en­try

F1 Racing - - INSIDER -

FIA ac­cepts US en­try from NASCAR mag­nate, but scep­tics ques­tion team’s abil­ity to com­pete ef­fec­tively

NASCAR team boss Gene Haas has won FIA back­ing in his at­tempt to run an Amer­i­can team in F1. Four years af­ter the fail­ure of the ill-fated US F1 project, which col­lapsed be­fore mak­ing it to the grid in 2010, F1’s gov­ern­ing body has ac­cepted an en­try from Haas for 2015.

Haas plans to base the team in Kan­napo­lis North Carolina, not far from Char­lotte, where US F1 was based. His ma­chine-tools com­pany has an ofce in Brussels but this may not be used.

“Ideally,” he said, “the main ofce for F1 would be here in Kan­napo­lis, and there would maybe be a smaller ofce some­where in ei­ther Ger­many or Italy for the as­sem­bly and dis­as­sem­bly of cars.”

Haas in­sists he can make the project work, and is plan­ning a tech­ni­cal part­ner­ship with Ital­ian race-car constructor Dal­lara.

“We’re new to this,” he said. “There is go­ing to be a big learn­ing curve, and to sit there and say we can un­der­stand what’s go­ing on with these cars within a year or two is not rea­son­able.

“It’s go­ing to take us a while to learn, and we’ll lean heav­ily on a tech­ni­cal part­ner to help us.” For­mer F1 and NASCAR driver Juan Pablo Mon­toya has said the plan is “com­pletely mad”, but Haas in­sists it is pos­si­ble.

“Haas Au­to­ma­tion builds ma­chine tools in Cal­i­for­nia, the most ex­pen­sive state in the Union as far as taxes go. We’re do­ing it in a place where no­body thinks you can build ma­chine tools efciently, yet we do that.

“We have set a prece­dent in terms of mak­ing a good prod­uct at a rea­son­able price, and I would hope, go­ing for­ward, we can put those same pa­ram­e­ters to work in For­mula 1.

“Lots of people say that it can’t be done but, like I say, we do things that other people say can’t be done all the time, so we’re not afraid of that. That’s some­thing that I’m look­ing for­ward to. It’s one of the chal­lenges pre­sented by try­ing to run an elite rac­ing team with­out spend­ing bil­lions of dol­lars.”

Could the US GP in Austin be graced by the pres­ence of its first US-based team in 2015?

Gene Haas has en­joyed suc­cess in NASCAR and now seeks to ex­pand into For­mula 1

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