Haas wary of investing more until F1’s future cemented

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Photo by: www.kymillman.com/f1

We’ve been discussing the recent change of direction in the discussions regarding the 2021 regulations changes which have been centered around engine specifications but those discussions have now spilled over to more than just the current engine manufacturers.

According to Haas F1, the delayed decisions are making it difficult to commit to investments until those changes are agree upon. In particular, the engines may or may not be ironed out but even committing to team expansion, more develop money in chassis design or other features are choosing to be difficult with team boss Gunther Steiner saying:

“Until we know exactly what is happening for 2021, we always grow but very slowly,” Steiner said when asked by Autosport about Haas’s plans.

“I’m not into quantity. I’d rather have quality.

“We’re not investing another $20million or $30m, another 100 people, we’re not going to do that. That would be unwise at this moment.

“We don’t know what’s happening in two years. If we do that now it could be only for one year. The earliest you can get something out of it is 2020, and you maybe have to change again because 2021 is coming.

“We will stay where we are, we can operate pretty well and we try to keep up.”

How would you approach some as fluid as this from a team owner perspective? Gene Haas already spends a small fortune on his chassis, operation, payroll and engine supply from Ferrari but would you be motivated to spend more if you had very little idea about what the sport was ultimately going to do?

To be fair, there have been other pivotal moments in Formula 1 as well but perhaps few that have hinged on such major changes including ownership, prize money, challenging viewership numbers, broadcast deals, race promoters seeking respite from enormous contracts and much more. It all culminates into a very challenging discussion and if I’m Gene, I’d be holding my wallet very closely too.

Hat Tip: Autosport

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Tom Firth

I’d be wary but F1’s management change aside, those same challenges are apparent in most areas of the sport so I’m not sure I would be much more wary to invest heavier in F1 right now than say NASCAR, Indycar, Formula E or sportscars.

photogcw

To me, it sounds like Gene and Guenther are preparing an exit strategy for 2020 if the regulations changed very dramatically or Ferrari really carry out that threat to bow out. There may be a few F1 teams further down in the paddock with a FOR SALE sign in the window in the near future.

Fast Freddy

I’m impressed that Haas would even consider another 100 people.