According to a report by German publication AMUS, Gene Haas is one of three candidates for the berth on next year’s grid alongside Stefan Grand Prix (who failed to claim a place in 2010) and an entry headed up by former Hispania team principal Colin Kolles. Haas currently has a team in NASCAR that he co-owns with driver Tony Stewart, but the team confirmed in a statement that a formal entry for the 2015 Formula One world championship had been lodged with the FIA.
“We have responded to the FIA’s ‘call for expression of interest’ regarding a Formula One entry on behalf of Haas Racing Development. We respect the FIA’s evaluation process and will share more details in the coming weeks.”
Of course, the last big effort in the United States to get a home-grown team into the sport came from USF1 back in 2009. The team was handed a berth for the 2010 world championship alongside Lotus (now Caterham), Virgin (now Marussia) and Campos Meta (then Hispania, then HRT, now defunct). However, due to financial problems, the team was eventually forced to cancel its entry and shut down operations.
With an established name in racing though, Haas perhaps has a better chance of succeeding where others have failed. Nevertheless, with Formula One being a Europe-centric sport, there would be a number of challenges that would need to be overcome. With the return of the United States Grand Prix in Austin and a second race planned in New Jersey, plus the emergence of youngsters Alexander Rossi and Conor Daly, the timing could be perfect for an American outfit to become the thirteenth team on the grid.
If only it were that simple…
Images courtesy of Octane Photographic.