Gene Haas says he intends to keep his F1 team’s spending under control by buying in as much technology as he can.
Haas told media in a press conference today he will make the most of recent rules changes and Haas Automation’s expertise to keep costs down.
“We have a budget, there’s a lot of unknowns in it,” he said. “We have budgets for what the engine packages will cost and those numbers are well known.”
“I think a lot of the exponential rise in costs is something that maybe was in the past. If you go back to say five or ten years ago where the rules were anything goes and exotic aero packages and exotic wind tunnels, these were the things that were driving the cost up, and then with the recession in 2008 things changed.
“Actually the rules have become much more favourable. There used to be maybe eight different suppliers of engines, you had every car manufacturer building for Formula One. There was no doubt they were spend 2-300 million dollars just to build an engine for a single car.
“Today there’s three current engine supplied and they’re required to make they’re engine packages available. We’re going to take advantage of those rules. We’re going to lean as heavily as we can on partners. Our job is not to reinvent the wheel. Our job is to race cars and win races.”
Haas admitted “I don’t exactly have the numbers” for the costs involved “but the numbers I’ve seen are reasonable”.
“Yes it’s expensive but I think that we’re going to have our own way of doing things,” he explained.
“Too many teams I think just go out there and throw money at it. We won’t be doing that, we’re not going to be throwing money at it. I think that myself and Guenther [Steiner], we both understand racing. We understand that typical businessmen going into this business simply say ‘well I just want the best’. The best doesn’t always mean the best for him it means the best for the guy that’s supplying him and how much money he can charge.
“We’re not going to be foolish like that, we’re going to spend our money wisely. We’ve going to do it with an American flair for design and efficiency and that’s how we’re going to control our costs.
“We’re not going to be a European-led team, we’re going to be an American-led team and we’re going to do it the way we think is most efficient. As a point, I’d like to point out Haas Automation builds machine tools in California, the most expensive state in the Union in terms of taxes, and we’re doing in a place that nobody thought you could build machine tools efficiently, and yet we do that. So we do have precedent in terms of making a good product at a very reasonable price and I would hope that going forward that I can put those same parameters to work in Formula One.
“A lot of people say it can’t be done. Like I say we do things that other people say can’t be done all the time. I’m not afraid of that and that’s something that I’m looking forward to, it’s one of the challenges of trying to run an elite racing team without spending billions of dollars.”
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