Haas confirms no F1 entry until 2016
4 June 2014 – Gene Haas has announced that his team will not join the Formula 1 grid until 2016, although he has insisted they are 'fully committed' to entering.
Haas, co-owner of title-winning NASCAR outfit Stewart-Haas Racing, won a Formula 1 team licence back in April with the FIA announcing that it had 'accepted the candidature of Haas Formula LLC'.
In a subsequent press conference Haas then said he would ideally like to see the team, which will be located in Kannapolis, North Carolina with a 'secondary' base in Europe, on the grid from next year. However, he has now admitted that will not happen.
"The plan is absolutely to launch in 2016 and we are fully committed to that. I don't think there is any doubt about that whatsoever," he told Forbes. "I think we will be a better team [entering in 2016 as opposed to 2015] because we will have more time to plan and we will be able to do a lot more engineering in Kannapolis.
"We have been working on a building there since November of last year as part of the expansion of the NASCAR team. In about a month we will have the NASCAR site open then about a month later we will have the Formula 1 site operational so we can go in there."
"From a personal standpoint, I really would have liked to go racing in 2015. It was hard to sit there and say no. Trust me, I really wanted to go," he added.
"The first year is always going to be going to be tough but I think that by waiting a year we will probably only have six months of it being really tough because we will be better prepared."
Haas also added that plans to set up the European base in Italy have not come to fruition and that instead the team will probably now opt for one in the United Kingdom. He remains committed to having the main base in the USA.