Haas team principal Guenther Steiner says his recent meeting with Alfa Romeo’s CEO was only an introductory talk and there has been no discussion of any potential partnership at this stage.
It was reported in Monaco that a meeting took place to agree a title sponsorship deal for when Alfa Romeo leaves Sauber at the end of this year, despite Haas already having a deal in place with MoneyGram. Steiner says he did meet with Alfa Romeo CEO Jean-Philippe Imparato but only to be introduced and he doesn’t know if there is any interest in partnering with his team in future.
“A lot of people are saying that (it’ll be a title partner) to me, but the only ones who haven’t told me that yet are Alfa Romeo!” Steiner said. “They are looking at what they are doing in the future, they came to see us to see how we are doing and it was an introduction, nothing else. I never met the CEO before in my life and we just got introduced, I think on the Sunday — I don’t even remember the day — in Monte Carlo. There was nothing to hide, we just said hello and that was it. I don’t know what they are doing in the future.
“MoneyGram is our title sponsor for now and for the foreseeable future. We’ve got a contract and they are very good to work with. We have got a very good relationship with them — they do a lot of activations as you guys saw, they are doing a very good job.”
While Steiner admits he can’t rule out the possibility of a future deal, he says it all rests on what Alfa Romeo would want to propose.
“There is a possibility of a lot of things. I cannot rule it out but I cannot say this is happening because it is not my decision,” he said. “I don’t know what they want to do.
“I think they are looking what they want to do — that’s my feeling. I don’t know because I would never ask them.
“I don’t know (if the Haas name could be dropped like at Sauber) because we never spoke about this. So I don’t know, I don’t have an answer for that, because we haven’t discussed it with Gene (Haas team owner). Because there’s nothing on the table, therefore I don’t even think about it.”