Haas: Investors saved Liberty from a scramble to rescue F1 teams

Formula 1 investors stepping in to rescue ailing teams has "saved" Liberty Media from having to "scramble" to prevent teams disappearing from the grid, says Haas owner Gene Haas

Haas: Investors saved Liberty from a scramble to rescue F1 teams

Over the summer, a Lawrence Stroll-led consortium rescued Force India from administration and entered the 'new' Racing Point Force India for the Belgian Grand Prix onwards.

F1's three new teams for 2010 - HRT, Virgin and Lotus - all ran into financial trouble and collapsed.

Haas, who runs the successful Stewart-Haas Racing NASCAR team that is in contention for the 2018 Cup title, says the American series is reacting better to similar situations.

"That is the bad side of racing," he told Autosport. "You see people who have spent fortunes in racing and walk away with nothing.

"It's pretty common, so you have to be doing it for the love of the sport. But we're starting to see how racing teams in all venues are looking like [this].

"The promoters expect to make money in business, the race tracks all expect to make money as a business and they make money at it, it's almost like the team owners should never make money.

"That business model, how it got that way, we don't know. In NASCAR, the owners are saying 'everyone else seems to make money, why shouldn't we make money?'

"I think it is changing, because in NASCAR a lot of the teams are disappearing.

"Force India was almost on the way out, if it wasn't for Lawrence Stroll stepping in and saving them or [Hans Rausing at] Sauber, those teams would have been gone.

"The fact that they were saved, saved Liberty Media from having to scramble.

"If a few of those teams were to drop out it probably would force the issue of 'how do we fund teams?'"

Haas was against Force India earning the prize money income due for its success as its original entity, because the Concorde Agreement specifies that a team has to be a continuous entity.

Haas said: "We don't want to see Force India go away, but we did everything according to the book, and we certainly don't want someone else sidestepping everything we did over two years, and breaking the line.

"Our argument is how FOM has come in and basically said, 'Here's how it's going to play,' and we're saying, 'No it seems to be in conflict with what we understand,' and we'd just like to have it vetted out."

Haas also says he currently sees a lack of progress on F1's wide-ranging overhaul planned for 2021.

"They can't agree on anything, they can't agree on engines, they can't agree on rules, but that's pretty typical for F1 when you get a committee together.

"It's like getting 10 people to go through a door, it just doesn't work.

"I can't speak for Liberty but I think they probably thought that they were going to have a lot more freedom to do what they wanted."

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Series Formula 1
Teams Haas F1 Team
Author Adam Cooper
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