UPDATED: FIA decision on Haas, new F1 teams delayed

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UPDATE (3:56 p.m. ET): NASCAR team co-owner Gene Haas will have to wait a little longer to find out if his application to own a team in Formula One has been accepted. Autoweek’s Adam Cooper is reporting that the decision, which was due to be made today, has now been delayed.

According to Cooper, the FIA has notified the candidates but apparently did not give a reason for the delay or a new deadline.

Haas, who co-owns Sprint Cup squad Stewart-Haas Racing, is one of two candidates for an F1 license. The other is a group from Romania led by former Hispania Racing Team (HRT) principal and managing director Colin Kolles.

Sanctioning body officials could issue licenses to both, only to one or none at all. And while the decision was expected to be made today, there was a possibility that F1 could delay the actual announcement of the license approval or denial.

Kolles could have one key advantage over Haas, namely experience. Prior to joining HRT, Kolles was previously team principal and managing director for a previous F1 team that campaigned under the names of Jordan, Midland, Spyker and Force India from 2005 through 2008.

Haas, a wealthy manufacturer of industrial machinery and components, has no prior experience in F1 other than being a long-time fan of the sport and series.

If approved, Haas would likely align himself with Ferrari but would own and operate his team from an operations base here in the U.S., most likely adjacent to SHR’s NASCAR headquarters in suburban Charlotte.

According to reports, Haas would likely purchase motors and chassis from Maranello.

Kolles’ group, which reportedly has heavy financial backing from Romanian government officials, would likely align itself with Lotus and operate from the now-defunct HRT F1 operations base near Munich.

Both Haas and Kolles paid a $130,000 fee as part of the application process. Both men were interviewed by a panel of FIA officials earlier this week as a final prelude to the eventual determination of whether a license will be granted to one or the other, or both or none.

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Ricciardo: Red Bull has ‘decent chance’ of Abu Dhabi F1 victory

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Daniel Ricciardo believes Red Bull stands a “decent chance” of signing off from the 2017 Formula 1 season with a victory in next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

After a slow start to the year, Red Bull made massive gains across the course of the season by developing its RB13 to end the season as front-runners, rivaling Mercedes and Ferrari for pace.

The Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi has a number of slow-speed sections that should suit the RB13 car, with Ricciardo optimistic about his chances of not only ending his podium drought at the track, but even winning the race.

“Yas Marina has actually been one of my favorite tracks over the years,” Ricciardo said in Red Bull’s pre-race preview.

“It’s been a bit like Suzuka for me though, a track that I’ve always enjoyed and gone well on but not quite reached the podium at. I broke that trend in Suzuka this year so hopefully I can do the same in Abu Dhabi.

“When you have so much time away from the car in the off season it helps to sign off with a strong result as it makes you feel like you really deserve a break.

“I think we should have a strong car in Abu Dhabi. I said I want another win before the season is out and I think we have a decent chance of achieving that.”

Red Bull has claimed three race wins through 2017, with Ricciardo’s victory in Azerbaijan being followed up by successes for teammate Max Verstappen in Malaysia and Mexico.