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Haas on pole to snap up Marussia assets in auction

NEWS STORY
16/12/2014

American tycoon Gene Haas has revealed that he will be bidding for the assets of the collapsed Marussia team when they are put up for auction today according to an article in the Guardian by Christian Sylt.

The team ceased trading in November and its administrators FRP Advisory are selling off nearly 1,000 items to pay its bills. The equipment on sale includes steering wheels, gearboxes, race suits and even the 2013 race car which lacks its Ferrari engine as it is understood that Marussia failed to settle its bill with the Scuderia.

It is of particular interest to Haas as he is launching his F1 team in 2016. He reveals that he is considering locating it in Abingdon in Oxfordshire and says "we have got the Marussia auction list so I think we will be bidders for some of that stuff. We are talking about getting some of the shipping containers and those kind of things that are very specific to Formula One would be really helpful."

Haas has refused to enter F1 by buying an existing team despite several being on the market including Caterham, which went into administration at the end of October. Haas is not deterred by several teams going to the wall as he says that their troubles were down to a flawed business model.

"The English have their way of doing stuff and we are going to be a little bit different. If we did it the way that Caterham and Marussia did it we would have the same result so I think we are going to do it differently."

Key to this approach is taking advantage of a new regulation which comes into force next year and allows teams to buy more parts from established F1 marques. "A lot of the teams in the UK build everything themselves. They seem to have this English mentality that this is the way it has to be done and that is just not our business model at all," says Haas.

Buying in more parts reduces start-up costs and it has already proven to be a successful template in NASCAR where Haas co-owns the championship-winning Stewart-Haas team. "Our business model in Formula One is based on our NASCAR race team where we use other people's engines and chassis," he says.

Unlike all existing F1 teams, the design division of Haas F1 will be split from the race operation. Design will be based alongside Stewart-Haas in North Carolina whilst the race outfit is on track to employ around 250 staff in the UK.

"We are definitely going to have an operation in the UK. We looked at a place in Abingdon and there are several available in that area. I guess it might be a possibility to take a look at the Marussia HQ too."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Paul C, 17/12/2014 4:02

"For heaven's sake Gene just buy Marussia building and all. If you buy a few Ferrari hybrid power units, you can test for most of 2015. Heck, Williams started out with customer cars."

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2. Posted by ClarkwasGod, 16/12/2014 19:13

"Hmmmm - so "The British" way (Mr Haas, this country is the United Kingdom of Great Britain & N. Ireland) is not good enough, or wrong - so, as mentioned below, the vast majority of F1 teams are wrong??? For some, unexplained reason we (British) have proved to be the dominant nation in F1. Just think of messrs Cooper, Chapman, as innovative constructors (especially Chapman), Coventry Climax, then Cosworth, as dominant engine designers - even the present Mercedes come from Ilmor, (as was), in Brixworth. The model so touchingly described by Mr Haas has been proven to work. There are numerous examples of other "models" including those based on US team structures that conclusively have not. We may be a small nation, but size is no indicator of quality. I for one would far rather be known as "the best" as opposed to "the biggest"."

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3. Posted by Vinicius, 16/12/2014 17:44

"Well, I'm not british, but let's face that McLaren and Williams does "the british" way and are growing up next year. Quite strange a guy considering Marussia and Caterham the british model. However, that statement shows Haas still with nothing, seeking to buy something. They need to work a lot and buy things in a short time (1 year)."

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