California driver Alexander Rossi ‘really interested’ in racing F1 for Gene Haas

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Gene Haas may still be sifting through potential drivers for his U.S.-based Formula One team that begins competing in 2016.

But one home-grown driver, 23-year-old Californian Alexander Rossi, is hoping to catch Haas’ eye for the made-in-the-USA team.

“I am really interested in the Haas team,” Rossi told the online site F1Web.It (quotes are translated).

“I have the necessary knowledge, the experience, I understand Formula 1 thanks to the experience I have gained. And I think to promote the presence of the sport in America, people need a home rider.

“Haas in this direction adds another element and takes a step forward. Every year I go back to the Austin circuit (Circuit of the Americas) for the Grand Prix, I find that the sport is growing (in the U.S.).

“I am proud to be part of the development of Formula 1 in America. Now (America on the F1 scene) will do something important with the arrival of Haas.”

Rossi has steadily moved up the racing ladder in Europe over the last six years, competing in Formula BMW, the Renault World Series and, most recently, GP2.

Rossi, who served as both a reserve and test driver last season in F1, said he is now “concentrating my efforts on IndyCar” for a possible ride in 2015.

“In the long term, I plan to be in Formula One, but having worked for two years as a test driver, in 2015 I want to race,” said Rossi, who added he’s “considering several opportunities.”

IndyCar may be the best place for him for at least one season, more out of necessity than design.

“As you know, in Formula One there is always very few places available, but now even less due to the collapse of the small teams,” Rossi said.

“I’m trying to run (in F1) in 2016. But unfortunately, as we all know, the places in Formula 1 (for 2015) are virtually unavailable. (And) now there are even less (chances in 2015) because of the fail of the small teams (that) I have experienced first-hand both with Caterham and Marussia.”

But his heart is still in F1. And that’s why Rossi thinks driving for Haas may be the best thing for both of them. It’s unclear if he has already spoken with Haas, but if not, such a conversation is likely soon.

“For six years, I’ve worked (to race) in Formula 1,” Rossi said. “I was close several times last season. We have opened the way to something important; I have to keep pushing.”

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