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Haas says Formula 1 is full of "whiners"

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Haas says Formula 1 is full of "whiners"
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Apr 15, 2016, 7:17 AM

Gene Haas says that Formula 1 has shown itself to be full of 'whiners', following the backlash from some rivals about his team's early success.

Gene Haas, Haas Automotion President in the Press Conference
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-16
Haas VF-16 detail
Esteban Gutierrez, Haas F1 Team signs autographs for the fans
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team signs autographs for the fans
Gene Haas, Haas Automotion President celebrates sixth placed on the team's debut for Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-16
Gene Haas, Haas Automotion President and Guenther Steiner, Haas F1 Team Principal
Romain Grosjean, Haas F1 Team VF-16

Haas is currently fifth in the constructors' championship after scoring points in its first two grands prix, and setting its sights on top 10 finishes at each race from now on.

But the way the team has approached F1 – thanks to a close technical partnership with Ferrari – has prompted criticism from some teams that it could be eroding the tradition of the sport being full of constructors.

Haas is unmoved by such claims though, and thinks his outfit should be getting praised rather than criticised for having come in and done such an impressive job.

"I guess in a sense there are a lot of whiners in F1, who talk about our success," he said in China on Friday. "But hey, we are just here racing with you.

"If a driver can figure out how to go through a turn, put a couple of turns together and beat somebody, we all think that is genius.

"We are like a racer: we figured out this is what the challenges are, we put it together this way and we went out on track and said 'hey, we can do this'.

"I don't know what they are complaining about. We are racing on their turf. If they cannot figure that out, they have a problem."

Only two constructors

With Haas re-emphasising that his outfit fully complies with the 'listed parts' regulations, he suggests that the era of there being a grid full of constructors has long gone.

"Let's put the record straight here: first of all there are only two constructors in this whole series," he said. "That is Ferrari and Mercedes.

"They design their own cars, they design their own engines, and for the most part they probably make 90 percent of the parts in-house or with their designs. Everybody else gets the major component, the engine, from another supplier.

"So those other nine teams are basically like us. We have a bigger percentage than they have, but they are getting a major component, that engine, from an outside supplier.

"We get that engine and transmission from an outside supplier so quite frankly that is a little bit of sour grapes."

Shaking things up

Haas has said that his outfit has worked hard to even get in to F1, so should be getting credit for doing so well so early in its life.

"We never read that memo that said you had to come into F1 and run at the back for five years! We kind of ignore that.

"If anything, F1 has provided a number of obstacles for us to get here, from the beginning with Bernie saying I don't think these guys are going to make it, to putting up a $20 million bond to be here, to all this: there have been a lot of obstacles to get to this point.

"And now we are here, we are here. We are not going away and they better get used to it. And if people don't like it then that is their problem."

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Haas F1 Team
Author Jonathan Noble