F1 teams call for an investigation into Haas-Ferrari partnership

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Formula One teams have called for an investigation into the partnership between Ferrari and Haas.

The American constructor had their first season in 2016, but shocked in Melbourne, qualifying in sixth and seventh place respectively on the grid.

Despite similar pit stop errors leading to the retirement of both men in a matter of laps, Haas' pace and exceptionally quick development has caused suspicion across the paddock.

The partnership between the Italian and American team see Haas use a Ferrari engine and parts, while Haas' chassis maker Dallara uses Ferrari's wind tunnel.

F1 has strict regulations to prevent teams sharing information on parts which must be made themselves, and from spending too long using a wind tunnel; regulations in which much of the grid are starting to believe Haas and Ferrari have broken.

Former Ferrari driver turned McLaren man Fernando Alonso described the 2018 Haas as a "Ferrari replica" during last week's season opener in Melbourne.

And, McLaren executive director Zak Brown added:  "We all know they have a very close alliance with Ferrari. We need to make sure it's not too close.

"There could be some influence, there are certainly some parts of the car that look very similar."

Force India chief operating officer Otmar Szafnauer hailed Haas' sensational improvements as "magic" and wants the matter discussed at the F1 Strategy Group.

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He said: "I don't know how they do it, it's magic. It's never been done before in Formula One.

"I just don't know how it can be right that someone who's been in the sport for a couple of years with no resource could produce a car like this.

"Does it happen by magic? If it does, I want the wand!

"All the aerodynamic surfaces have to be your own. If they're not, I don't know how you can tell unless you start investigating.

"Maybe it is their own, it's just suspect - how can you gain that knowledge without history and the right tools and people?"

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In response, Haas boss Guenther Steiner says the team aren't doing anything illegal.

He said: "We have a team that can be proud of what it is achieving at the moment. We are not doing anything we shouldn't be doing or not allowed to do."

Haas driver Romain Grosjean has also spoken out against the claims, and he added: "It's the same thing every time we are fast and it was the same thing last year.

"We were Ferrari B. We are using the same engine, same gearbox, same suspension, everyone knows the suspension is providing a lot of the flow, so of course there's going to be similarities.

"But we are building our own car. It's not nice for the people that work hard and produce the Haas F1 VF-18."

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