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Haas chief snaps back at 'white Ferrari' accusations and makes "copy the best" claim

Mirror logo Mirror 6 days ago Daniel Moxon

Guenther Steiner gave a typically honest response to allegations that his Haas team has copied Ferrari in its latest car upgrade.

The American team gave Kevin Magnussen an updated VF-22 for the Hungarian Grand Prix, though Mick Schumacher was made to wait. And many couldn't help but notice that, at least visually, it has a lot of characteristics that can also be found on the Scuderia's F1-75.

Haas are already a customer of the Italian team, which supplies its engines, gearboxes and suspension systems. Their cars earned the nicknames of "white Ferraris" after showing up in Budapest with even more Ferrari-style parts – and Steiner has made no effort to hide his team's desire to base their design upon one of the fastest cars on the grid.

Asked by Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet if Haas were inspired by the Ferrari design, he replied: "I would say quite a lot, yes. Is there something wrong with that? If someone accuses us of copying something, I always give the same answer: 'Should we copy Williams?' I don't want to offend Williams, but that's a completely different concept and they are behind us in the world championship.

"If you're going to copy something, then the best, and that's Ferrari and Red Bull Racing at the moment. Our car has the same drive unit as Ferrari, the same gearbox and the same suspension. So why should we copy anything else? They also drive Grand Prix victories, so it's obvious."

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Magnussen's upgraded car did not make much of an impression in Hungary. The Dane finished out of the points and two places behind team-mate Schumacher, though his race was hampered somewhat by a black and orange flag forcing him to pit after sustaining damage in the opening stages.

Magnussen feels the upgrades will help Haas in the second part of the season © REUTERS Magnussen feels the upgrades will help Haas in the second part of the season

Despite a disappointing result, Magnussen saw enough from the upgrades, which will be on both cars next time out at Spa, to be optimistic. "It looks more like a hit," he said. "We collected what we could this weekend in terms of tests and data. We have seen some positive things, but we need a little more time to get some more lap time out of it.

"At least we've put an upgrade on that behaves as expected and has potential. It's a good step. And it doesn't look like we've taken a step back. In fact, it already looks like a small step forward, even though as a team we have been a bit beside ourselves this weekend. But it seems my car is a bit better which is positive."

As for the second half of the season, he was unwilling to speculate too much about what it might hold for Haas. He added: "I try not to have too many expectations. I go into it with an open mind and see what we can do. It's just exciting to see if we can hit the mark."


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