Jul.23 (GMM/Inautonews.com) Another team boss has called F1 newcomer Gene Haas’ approach to building up his 2016 outfit “smart”.
Californian Haas, already a co-owner of a Nascar team, is entering F1 next year to promote his machine tool company Haas Automation.
His commercial and technical alliance with Ferrari, however, has raised eyebrows up and down pitlane, to the point that the FIA recently sent an inspector to Maranello to ensure the wind tunnel programme is above board.
“If the FIA does an inspection and finds nothing, then for me there is no doubt that everything conforms to the current regulations,” Mercedes boss Toto Wolff was quoted by Speed Week.
“I find that the cooperation between Ferrari and Haas can pave new ways of working, which is very interesting,” he added.
“I think the way Gene Haas is coming into formula one is very clever,” Wolff said, “and it opens up a whole range of possibilities.”
Agreeing with Wolff’s assessment is another F1 team boss, Franz Tost, who heads the second Red Bull-owned team Toro Rosso.
Some years ago, the Faenza based team, having earlier raced with essentially a Red Bull chassis, had to alter its Haas-like approach to F1 due to a tightening of the ‘customer car’ restrictions.
Asked if F1 has now swung back towards customer cars, Tost told Italy’s Omnicorse: “In reality there has been no real regulatory change, because it will be Dallara who is manufacturing their (Haas’) cars.
“Everything else, from the wings to the suspension and the power unit will come from Ferrari.
“I think Haas was smart in dealing with this situation, because it is not easy to get into formula one from scratch. So I think they have gone in the best direction to be competitive enough from the beginning,” added Tost.