Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has revealed that the deal between Rich Energy and Haas came about quickly. The American outfit confirmed on Thursday that Rich Energy would be its title partner in 2019.
Rich Energy had previously been linked with Force India when it was plunged into administration at the end of the July. Steiner confirmed in Mexico that talks with Rich Energy begun just before the US Grand Prix last weekend, and a deal was signed hastily.
Rich Energy was also linked with a Williams deal before it confirmed its ties with Haas: “It was before Austin that we started to talk,” Steiner told RaceFans. “We talked what we can do, what we will do and what they will do, and then it came together.”
Haas' 2019 car will have an altered livery, which Steiner says will have its share of fans and critics: “I think always livery it’s always taste. We never will agree on it. I wouldn’t say it’s a good thing or a bad thing, it just will be different. Hopefully we can make it look nice and people will still like it.”
Haas joined the grid in 2016 and has quickly become one of the leading teams in the midfield fight. Steiner says that since the team has established itself on the grid, now is the right time for it to link up with different companies.
"Now we are in three years the Haas F1 name is I think pretty well-established, I think everybody would agree to that. Now everyone knows what Haas F1 is which in the beginning it wouldn’t have been if we’d have another one in it. If a partner comes along which contributes enough to do something together as well, because this gives us opportunities, why not do it? I think it will help the team.”
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing