Haas hoping to avoid pay driver route

Team owner Gene Haas has expressed his desire not to take on another ‘pay driver’ and make money through on-track performances instead.

Ferrari-backed Esteban Gutierrez, who was funded through Mexican sponsors, was ditched in favour of Kevin Magnussen ahead of the 2017 season after underperforming for the American outfit.

But while Haas has said it is impossible not to consider a ‘pay driver’, he is hoping to avoid that model altogether.

“No, I don’t think we rule it out,” Haas said.

“But for a business model it doesn’t really make a lot of sense. It’s no secret that it costs $60m to put a car on the track for the season, and if someone – not just Ferrari – gives you a driver and they’re going to pay you $5 or $6 million, there’s a $55m deficit there.”

“I think our point of view has always been that we need to score points and that’s how we make money moving forward. So that’s our business model,” Haas added.

“I think Ferrari respects that. Based on that, if there’s some mutual agreement we could come to, we probably would be more open to it.”

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