Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has confirmed his squad has launched an intent to appeal the FIA Stewards decision that ruled in favour of Force India following its hearing into the team.
After a lengthy investigation triggered by Haas’ protest against Force India’s cars, the FIA dismissed the case on the grounds of the Silverstone-based squad becoming an all-new team, Racing Point Force India, after the closing of the previous outfit Sahara Force India during its takeover in August.
Within the eight-page decision document from the FIA, it confirmed as it is not part of the Budapest Agreement “it has no relevancy in regulatory matters” which could lead to discussions between F1’s commercial rights holders regarding prize money with new teams entering the sport.
Teams normally must wait two years in F1 before gainig full prize money, which had made Force India’s situation unclear as a new team during its takeover, but could lead to the Silverstone-based squad being denied its full payment after the hearing.
Haas, the newest team on the F1 grid having arrived in 2016, had been seeking clarification “to make it equal for everybody” with Steiner confirming its intention to appeal the decision.
“In the end it is all about money,” Steiner told Sky Sports F1 during FP3 at the Abu Dhabi GP. “We don’t want more of the money we just want to make it equal for everybody. We had to do two years of this and in our opinion this is a new team so we asked for this to be clarified.
“I didn’t have time to read it through as it is a big document explaining why. They have decided and we have filed our intention to appeal. It doesn’t mean much it just gives ourselves to read over it and find out if it makes sense to appeal or not.
“I went straight to the session so I will know more at the beginning of the week when I’ve had time to speak with our legal advisors about what we are going to do next.”
Steiner also emphasised Haas will not officially appeal the FIA decision until a final call is made early next week after examining the full explanation. F1 teams have 96 hours to officially appeal decisions with the FIA.
“The argument was that in our opinion they are a new constructor because they came in with a licence which means it is a new constructor,” he said. “That’s what we were arguing.
“No I have no idea yet, I wouldn’t jump to any conclusions now [about appealing] that needs to be dealt with after the race weekend. Now I want to get the best out of the last race weekend of the year and then on Monday and Tuesday we’ll think about what we do next.”