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Cost cap proposals holding Haas back, says Steiner

Gunther Steiner, Haas F1 Team Principal.
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Haas F1 Team principal Guenther Steiner says that he needs to know more details about Liberty Media's proposal to introduce a cost cap into Formula 1.

He said that uncertainty over what will happen is already affecting the team's own plans for its short- and medium-term future.

Steiner feels he can't make vital decisions on expanding the team if the cost cap ends up limiting recruitment and overall budgets.

“We’ve already started this process at about mid-season when we discussed we were still up and down and needed to settle,” he explained.

“At the moment we want to stop because we want to see what Liberty Media comes up with for the cost cap," he continued. "Why would we grow a team for one or two years then to dismantle it again?

“With the cost cap coming in we don’t really know where to go. At the moment I don’t want to grow any bigger after our next step.

"Once we know where the sport is going then we can react but there is no point to react now and then counter-react a year later.

"Next year will go and if you recruit again after that, it is for 2019," he noted. "You might need to go smaller a year later.

"When the cost cap is here, if there are no negatives then we can grow and have growing pains rather than the pain of letting people go."

In the meantime, Steiner said that Haas would simply have to make do with the resources and personnel that it already had in place.

“We have to manage better the people we have at the moment," he concluded. "After next year we will know more about the new direction of the sport.

Steiner added that he didn't intend to be critical of Liberty, and appreciated their difficult position resolving this and many other issues facing the sport.

“It is very difficult to get 10 teams who are different in their structures, ambitions and why they are in the sport to get them together on common ground,” Steiner said.

"Liberty is working hard at it," he acknowledged. “I think they will work diligently. I hope by the middle of next year we’ll have some answers."

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