No American driver for Haas F1

Haas F1 may be the first USA-based team to enter Formula 1 since 1986, but they will not have an American driver.

There have been suggestions that a local driver would be selected to increase the interest in the team in the USA, with former Caterham and Marussia reserve driver Alexander Rossi appearing to be the only real candidate.

However, Rossi's chances of making the step up to F1 have been dashed by team principal Guenther Steiner.

"There is nobody out there at the moment,"  Steiner told the official Formula 1 website of the availability of American drivers.

"Yes, there are drivers in GP2 and Formula Three, but having a rookie in a new team… that is difficult for both sides," he added "The potential of such a partnership failing is pretty high.

"So at the moment we'd rather not be looking at that avenue, because you are also not helping an inexperienced driver – he could be burned in one season. We are new, so we need a known quantity in the team."

Mexican Esteban Gutierrez looks set to lock in one of the race-seats, with team owner Gene Hass confirming that one Ferrari reserve driver will be appointed. Haas F1 have a close technical partnership with Ferrari.

"One of the drivers will be a Ferrari reserve driver, and we're still looking for an experienced Formula One driver," Haas told Autosport. "A current driver. No rookies."

Steiner added that the team's line-up would be announced in the coming weeks.

"We are very close to some drivers – and at the end of September we will come forward. It is good to get another box ticked," said the Austrian.

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