Haas title sponsor likens doubters to moon landing truthers

The boss of Haas Formula 1 team title sponsor Rich Energy says doubting the legitimacy of his company or its products is “like saying man never walked on the moon”.

Haas title sponsor likens doubters to moon landing truthers
Listen to this article

Haas unveiled its 2019 Formula 1 car on Thursday, complete with a brand-new black-and-gold livery to echo the colour scheme of its new energy drink backer.

Rich Energy was linked with buying Force India at the start of last year and then again in the summer, but conversations were played down by the team both times.

The company tabled a bid to buy Force India when it fell into administration, but a judge ruled its funding plan insubstantial.

However, in October Rich Energy signed its title sponsorship deal with Haas, and Danish newspaper BT reported last month that team boss Gunther Steiner said a payment had already been made.

New look photos:

Addressing criticisms about the company’s credibility and comments about the rare sightings of its products, Rich Energy CEO William Storey told Motorsport.com that he welcomed scrutiny and “the detractors are obviously not on the same planet as you and me”.

“I think a lot of people have put two and two together and got five,” he said.

“I’ve heard these nonsense rumours, whatever, and it’s just completely risible. I just ignore it.

“Ultimately we’ve just produced 90million cans. As far as I’m concerned anyone who says it doesn’t exist it’s like saying man never walked on the moon, or Elvis is still alive. It’s just fantasy.”

Storey wants his company, which last year he claimed is backed by "four sterling billionaires” reported to include West Ham United Football Club owners David Sullivan and David Gold, to be in F1 so it can grow its profile.

He wants it pitched directly against Red Bull, which is the world’s best-selling energy drink, and said a fair explanation of Rich Energy’s lower profile is because it has so far been an exclusive product not available off-the-shelf.

“Actions speak louder than words,” said Storey. “At the end of the day when the tide goes out we see who is swimming naked, don’t we?

“Ultimately, I was very consistent from day one. Everything I’ve said has been the case.

“It’s interesting that all these so-called detractors have never met me and actually don’t know us at all.

“It’s speculation based on no information. Everyone who actually knew us and knew what was going on knew what we were about.

“All our detractors were not in possession of the facts.”

Storey said Rich Energy has been ready to enter F1 “for some period of time”.

He is understood to have had conversations with at least Williams and McLaren before signing the Haas deal.

“This was the best deal we felt was available with any team,” he said. “We’re delighted with Haas as a team.

“We think we’ve got a better product and brand than Red Bull and it’s fantastic to be able to compete with them on and off track.”

Gene Haas, Haas F1 Team, William Rtorey, Rich Energy CEO

Gene Haas, Haas F1 Team, William Storey, Rich Energy CEO

Photo by: Rich Energy

shares
comments
Gallery: Haas's 2019 Formula 1 car
Previous article

Gallery: Haas's 2019 Formula 1 car

Next article

A new look: Haas F1 unveil black and gold livery for 2019

A new look: Haas F1 unveil black and gold livery for 2019
Why few would blame Leclerc if he leaves Ferrari in future Prime

Why few would blame Leclerc if he leaves Ferrari in future

OPINION: Ferrari's numerous strategy blunders, as well as some of his own mistakes, have cost Charles Leclerc dearly in the 2022 Formula 1 title battle in the first half of the season. Though he is locked into a deal with Ferrari, few could blame Leclerc if he ultimately wanted to look elsewhere - just as Lewis Hamilton did with McLaren 10 years prior.

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat Prime

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat

After being ditched by McLaren earlier in his F1 career Sergio Perez fought his way back into a seat with a leading team. BEN EDWARDS thinks the same could be happening to another member of the current grid

Formula 1
Aug 8, 2022
How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay Prime

How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay

Winner of 13 grands prix including Monaco and survivor of a life-changing plane crash, David Coulthard could be forgiven for having eased into a quiet retirement – but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, in fact he’s busier than ever, running an award-winning media company and championing diversity in motor racing. Not bad for someone who, by his own admission, wasn’t quite the fastest driver of his generation…

Formula 1
Aug 7, 2022
Could F1 move to a future beyond carbon fibre? Prime

Could F1 move to a future beyond carbon fibre?

Formula 1 has ambitious goals for improving its carbon footprint, but could this include banishing its favoured composite material? Pat Symonds considers the alternatives to carbon fibre and what use, if any, those materials have in a Formula 1 setting

Formula 1
Aug 6, 2022
The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin F1 move Prime

The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin F1 move

Fernando Alonso’s bombshell switch to Aston Martin sent shockwaves through Formula 1, not least at Alpine that finds itself tangled in a contract standoff with Oscar Piastri. Not shy of a bold career move and with a CV punctuated by them, there were numerous hints that trouble was brewing.

Formula 1
Aug 4, 2022
The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships Prime

The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships

OPINION: Ferrari's Formula 1 title hopes look all but over after another strategic blunder in last week's Hungarian Grand Prix denied Charles Leclerc the chance to fight for victory, while handing it to chief rival Max Verstappen. The Scuderia now faces intense scrutiny over what it must now do to finally become a genuine factor in championship battles

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2022
The clues about Hamilton’s F1 retirement plans after Vettel decision Prime

The clues about Hamilton’s F1 retirement plans after Vettel decision

OPINION: Sebastian Vettel is set to leave Formula 1 at the end of 2022 and will, rather shockingly, be replaced by Fernando Alonso at Aston Martin. But what about the final chapter of the other driver that defined the post-Michael Schumacher era? In Hungary, Lewis Hamilton spoke about his future in the context of Vettel’s upcoming departure, which offered clues on how long it will last.

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2022
Why all signs point to F1’s Monaco special relationship continuing Prime

Why all signs point to F1’s Monaco special relationship continuing

OPINION: With more potential venues than there are slots in future calendars, rumours have been circulating that the Monaco Grand Prix could be a casualty of F1’s expansion into new markets. But Mark Gallagher thinks this is highly unlikely.

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2022