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Haas would only sign an American driver who is "ready for F1"

Written by  Jan 13, 2018

Haas F1 team principal Guenther Steiner has suggested that while signing an American driver is an ambition for the US outfit, they would only be selected if they were "ready" for Formula 1.

The arrival of Gene Haas' team in 2016 was seen as a big step forward for the sport which, despite recent strong growth, has never matched the likes of IndyCar and NASCAR for interest in the States.

However, the potential marketing opportunity for an American driver to race in an American team has yet to be taken advantage, with 2016 Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi the last to compete in F1 - completing several races with Manor at the end of the 2015 season.

"It's on top of our list if there's a good one. Obviously, we want one," Steiner told Autosport. "[However,] just having an American driver who maybe cannot compete at a certain level is maybe not good for the sport.

"At the moment there is nobody ready for F1 in the United States in my opinion."

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The Haas boss also argued whether the team, which has finished eighth in their first two seasons in the constructors' championship, would be attractive enough for an American driver, pointing to the ambitions of their current line-up of Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen.

"They are both worthy of staying," said Steiner. "Do either of them want to stay? That's the next thing, there is a lot of factors which come into that.

"People want to say we take somebody else, but no. We're not. We are fine," he concluded.

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