FEBRUARY 24, 2016
Haas not desperate to sign F1 sponsors
Gene Haas insists he is "not desperate" to fill up the livery of the new American team's 2016 livery.
It is notable that, despite the huge interest in F1's newest team, only the personal sponsors of drivers Romain Grosjean and Esteban Gutierrez are easily visible on the grey, black and red car and their race overalls.
"We received many requests," Haas smiled as he attended the Barcelona test on Tuesday, "but we did not hear the numbers that we wanted to hear."
He told Speed Week that a lack of sponsorship is not a big deal.
"Good point," he answered when told that he probably wants to focus more on promoting his own company, Haas Automation, the world's biggest machine tool builder.
"We are certainly not a mass product like a car or an energy drink. If the right sponsor comes along, we will listen. But we are not desperate.
"We are prepared to be financially efficient: the budget is appropriate for what we want to achieve," Haas added.
However, Haas got off to a shaky start at its first official test when the front wing on Grosjean's car spectacularly failed at high speed, prompting a rapid re-design.
"This was because there was an error in the processing of the composite and aluminium," Gene Haas, who said he wants to come to about half of the 21 races this year, explained.
He said points are the goal for 2016.
"I think places 8 or 9 are feasible," said Haas. "Then we will increase the performance step by step. In the years beyond we want to win races.
"But we are willing to show a lot of patience."