Guenther Steiner explains Haas sponsorship situation after latest Rich Energy fiasco

Haas are keen, but not necessarily desperate, to bring new sponsors on board.

Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has revealed that the American side are making some good progress in finding a new sponsor after recent breakdowns in relationships.

Haas teamed up with William Storey’s Rich Energy brand ahead of the 2019 company, the premium UK energy drink manufacturer set on displacing Red Bull on and off the track.

However, the Banbury-based team’s form declined that season despite a promising start, and Storey quickly became impatient at his lofty expectations not being met.

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Rich Energy prematurely announced that they were ending their partnership with Haas due to “poor performance” ahead of the British Grand Prix, before the contract was eventually terminated after the Italian Grand Prix.

In 2021, Gene Haas’ team paired up with oligarch Dmitry Mazepin’s Uralkali firm, and the money from that deal funded a drive for Dmitry’s son, Nikita.

Jack & Jones, who left following the departure of Kevin Magnussen at the end of 2020, took a parting shot at the signature of a driver who had been involved in an off-track incident in Bahrain that year, affirming that that they wanted to take “distance” from the Russian’s behaviour.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Uralkali were dropped by Haas, which led to the dismissal of Mazepin and the sensational return of Magnussen.

After two previous deals which have turned sideways, Haas are naturally going to be wary about jumping into bed with another sponsor.

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It is a competitive world in Formula 1, and not everyone is lining up to spend money on a midfield team, so it is difficult to find solid sponsors, but Haas are making some headway at least.

“There are quite a lot of people [wanting to watch F1] at the moment,” said Steiner, as per GPFans.

“Honestly, I mean, what is a queue? A queue is three people but you don’t have that many companies that [will] pay you this amount of money, but we have had very good talks and it’s progressing very well.

“We are negotiating, there is good interest in it, hopefully if everything goes well in the next month or two, we can announce something.”

READ: ‘Should we copy Williams?’ Guenther Steiner dismisses cheating allegations

As for the nature of any new agreement, the Italian indicated that it would be “hopefully a title [sponsor] as well, but that’s not for sure.”

Steiner suggested that his team had received some lowball offers from sponsors who believed Haas would grab anything they could get their hands on, but their financial situation is not quite as desperate as some may believe.

“In the beginning, the good interest was people wanting a cheap ride because they thought we were struggling and all that stuff, that didn’t work,” explained Steiner.

“People see what we are doing, we got kicked in our nuts basically, but we are still up and standing and going strong.

“People believe in that, they know we can do better than we are doing now.”

Haas are currently seventh in the Drivers’ Standings on 34 points after seven points finishes in 13 races between Magnussen and team-mate Mick Schumacher.