Haas hires key technical staff for F1 team

2016 F1 season

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HaasHaas F1 team, which will make its debut in the 2016 F1 season, has announced three key hirings to its technical team.

Ben Agathangelou has joined the team from Ferrari as their chief aerodynamicist. Agathangelou was responsible for Ferrari’s recent upgrade of its wind tunnel and has previously worke for Red Bull and McLaren.

The team has already completed a 60 per cent scale model of the car it will race in 2016 for wind tunnel testing.

Two other significant hirings have joined Haas from Marussia. Rob Taylor has been appointed as chief designer, and like Agathangelou has also previously worked at Ferrari, McLaren and Red Bull.

Dave O’Neill has also moved from Marussia to Haas and will be the team manager. O’Neill helped set up Marussia initial entry into Formula One at the end of 2009, when it entered under the Virgin name. Prior to that he spent eight years at Jordan.

Haas will base its European operation at its recently-acquired former Marussia premises in Banbury, Oxfordshire, where the team’s car transporters, pit and garage equipment will be stored between races.

Team principal Gunther Steiner said “while there is still a lot of work to do, a lot has already been accomplished for Haas F1 Team to be competitive when we join the F1 grid in 2016”.

“Our technical partnership with Ferrari has allowed us to develop our car and our people at an exceptional pace. The way we’re going about our F1 team is new and different, but it’s working. We’re committed to our plan, we’re committed to F1 and, most importantly, we’re on schedule.

“This time next year, our cars will have already been tested and we’ll be readying them for Melbourne.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 27 comments on “Haas hires key technical staff for F1 team”

    1. As an American, I am really excited to finally have US team. I really hope they can come in and represent well. It appears they are on the right track. I know it will take years to get there, but just being able to compete without all the money issues like most beginners lately would be great. :)
      I would like to see a veteran driver bropught in to help things and possibly a young American in the other car. Can’t wait to see who Mr. Haas picks…..

      1. @twiinzspeed – As a non-American I have to say, I am with you 100%, it is about time the US got a team on the grid and helped to shift some of the focus out of Europe. They do seem to be chucking everything at it, so good luck to them, I just hope they can stick at it and pull it off – however long it takes.

        I’ll be shouting for thm next year that’s for sure :)

        1. Haas has a great track record in other series, so it boads well that he can be successful. I look for them to make things competitive within a year or two.

          1. Everything I’m reading about this effort gives me hope that Haas can be fighting for wins if they can stay the course long enough. He seems to understand that it’s going to take years. I just hope people understand how long it’s going to take to get to the front of the field and give them time. If they’re a solid mid-field team by 2020, i’ll count that as a win. After the shame of USF1 in 2010, we need this to work.

      2. as a non american, i say why bother? america has such great racing series like nascar and indycar, both of which are more affordable then f1, so why bother entering the pretentious world of F1? – a dieing breed in world racing it seems anyway. Haas entry into f1 is very impressive, but in this day and age, it needs much much more investment (ie manufacturer backing) to be capable of competing up the grid, and not many manufacturers are interested in f1 anymore. Haas will do okay, but they are destined for the midfield at best. f1 needs to seriously change to let competition happen and to let privateer teams have a serious go. i am sure Haas has nothing to lose (which it will in my mind), as Haas is so rich – but he wont go to the extend of spending as the manufacturer teams (ie why is he hiring ex marussia workers and not poaching current top team personal with his wealth).

        1. Why bother? Because F1 is a global brand, unlike NASCAR and Indy (Haas is already in NASCAR by the way, and successful at that). His stated aim is to use the FI exposure to double the size of his machine tool business, particularly outside the US.

          It will take time but I have a feeling Haas will do well in F1. And his measure of success will not necessarily be winning championships.

        2. it needs much much more investment (ie manufacturer backing) to be capable of competing up the grid

          Yeah, we saw that with Williams last year, don’t we?

    2. I wouldn’t be surprised to see them beat Manor in 2016 (if Manor stays on the grid).

      1. Duncan Snowden
        10th March 2015, 17:22

        A year is a long time in F1. I’m not saying you’re wrong – in fact I tend to agree; IMO, Haas seems the best-thought-through new entry since Stewart – but neither would I be surprised to see the opposite, if Manor can pick itself up from its recent setbacks. Of all the 2010 intake, it’s proved itself to be the most resilient.

      2. Not beating manor by huge difference would be a catastrophe!

    3. Apex Assassin
      10th March 2015, 16:27

      Have to admit, thusfar Haas has impressed at every turn.

    4. If Haas are were Marussia were, where are Manor now?

      1. Probably in Dinnington. Marussia moved into the old Ascari factory when they went bust, but I think they still kept their original base.

        1. yes, they are in their “own” old factory again, where they also have their other racing based @synapseza, @fixy

      2. I drove past the old Marussia factory yesterday and can confirm the “Haas F1 Team” logo is already up behind the reception desk where a couple of weeks ago it was a picture of a Marussia F1 car and logo.

    5. A few weeks ago, I stumbled across an interesting article on Haas in a non-motorsport business magazine published in North Carolina.

    6. The brilliant thing about Hass is he realizes the marketing exposure for having an F1 team has already begun. By approaching the preparation work in such a professional manner he has already created positive associations with his name and brand. Obviously success on the track is a long way off, and not a certain thing at all, but so far so good!

      1. Although I couldn’t spell his name right, so maybe there is work yet to do.

    7. I cannot wait to have an American team on the F1 grid. I am very impressed with the methodical approach Haas is taking to get his team ready. Here is a man who has a passion for racing tempered by experience and a pragmatic approach to entering a new and highly technical sport. He knows he will not enter F1 and compete with Merc, RBR, McLaren etc. right off the bat and it is reflected in his plans and outlook. He was in NASCAR for several years before his team was a winner and he expects no different in F1. I think the pairing with Ferrari is an inspired move and provides the necessary guidance into the new world of F1. I would love to see an experienced dirver (Diresta, Buemi, Vergne) paired with a talented American (Rossi, Rahal, etc).

      1. Vergne/Rossi all the way!

    8. Would love for them to succeed and make it to the grid in 2016, but the memories of USF1 are still fresh.

    9. racerdude7730
      10th March 2015, 18:44

      I really really hope Haas can pull this off because as an American it hurts me to always hear how Americans cant do F1 and then to always hear about the USF1 disaster. I really am hopping for the best with this! He has the money just show us the results and dont just be another team try and make something of it!

    10. Exciting as this is without an American driver, which present 2016 superliscence requirements look to make pretty much impossible, will new American fans really take to the team as quickly? I feel like the Haas machine can produce a car, maybe even a good one, but without an American face behind the wheel, the effort might be hamstrung from the start.

    11. GB (@bgp001ruled)
      10th March 2015, 19:46

      i am not a fan of haas! not by any stretch! but i must admit they seem really serious! my impression is that this team is more serious and better prepared than lotus racing, virgin racing or hispania. a complettely different approach than those teams had!
      i am glad there will be another team on the grid, but i dont see them reaching the midfield in one or two years. and afterwards we will have to see if they want to still be in F1 or are still haas!!!
      i dont think haas knows what he is getting into (financially and technically), but it will be exciting to follow (either if he succeeds or fails)!

    12. Rumour somewhere that the 60% model they are working with is more or less this years Ferrari. Great coup for Ferrari as if so the wind tunnel hours for this year could be doubled for them. Great trick if possible.

      1. I’m pretty certain that would be 100% illegal.

    13. Good start. Hiring no previous Caterham people should set Haas for a different location.

    Comments are closed.