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Steiner welcomes FIA to Haas base to investigate Ferrari relationship

Haas boss Guenther Steiner believes that the team's relationship with Ferrari is only criticised when the American outfit "have a good car".

Haas boss Guenther Steiner has invited the FIA to his team's Maranello base amid criticism over their partnership with Ferrari. It has been reported that some rival F1 teams have asked the governing body to take a closer look at the similarities between Haas' new VF-22 entry and Ferrari's race-winning F1-75. The Scuderia have long provided Haas with a power unit, gearbox and other non-listed parts, while Mick Schumacher is a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy. But their relationship has strengthened in recent seasons, with a number of the Italian team's technical staff moving into a facility in Maranello - separate to the main Ferrari factory - where they manufacture listed parts for Haas, in light of Ferrari having to slim down their operations due to budget cap restrictions.

Ferrari protest no wrongdoing with Haas partnership

Ferrari have long declared that their relationship with Haas abides by regulations that make clear - whilst the two teams can share a wind tunnel - they are not allowed to exchange data. "Those persons will be in Maranello in a completely separate building to Scuderia Ferrari, so they will not have access to the Scuderia Ferrari building. It is separate and they will remain in the area," Team Principal Mattia Binotto said in 2020. "Haas is a fully-independent team compared to Ferrari. It's not a junior team and we are not exchanging information beyond what's possible by the regulations, so it's a completely different organisation, independent to Ferrari."

Rival teams question possible "loopholes"

Alpine chief Otmar Szafnauer is amongst the team bosses to have voiced concerns over some partnerships on the grid, without pointing to Haas or Ferrari specifically. He told media, including RacingNews365.com , back in March: "I still think there are some loopholes that people who share tunnels can exploit. "If you're sharing tunnels, and you're in the same place at the same time, and you're having coffee with other aerodynamicists, there are ways to exploit that. "We have to figure out how to close those loopholes."

Steiner invites FIA to Haas' Maranello base

In response, Steiner has stated that the FIA are welcome to visit Haas in Maranello and regularly do so, to ensure the team are sticking to the rules. "We do everything according to the regulations," Steiner told Germany's RTL . "I said to the FIA, 'Guys, please come and check every day, because we are doing everything according to the rules'. "The FIA ​​​​is with us in Maranello, checking. They are welcome. If they find something, we will improve it. But they will not find anything [to suggest] that we have copied a car."

Steiner: Criticism comes only when Haas are doing well

Steiner was also quick to quip that criticism of Haas has come after a start to the season that has seen them impress, and not during the years prior in which they were fighting at the back of the grid. "The criticism always comes up when we have a good car. It's gotten boring, like warmed-up soup. It's always the same [and] everyone is trying to invent something that isn't there," he continued. "We're doing it according to the rules. It's getting tedious, this criticism and this constant complaining. "You have to have proper arguments when you complain. You can't always say the same thing, otherwise it's like a broken record that keeps repeating itself."

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