Back in December we received word that the FIA was preparing to open up the application process for a new team to join Formula One. A month later we heard that Gene Haas, founder of NASCAR team Stewart-Haas Racing, was throwing his proverbial hat in the ring. Now the word on the street circuit is that, not only is Haas the front-runner, but F1 organizers could allow a second new team in as well.
The identity of that second team has yet to be disclosed, but rumors have been pointing towards Colin Kolles making a comeback at the head of a new outfit. Kolles (pictured above) is an experienced (if somewhat unsuccessful) F1 strategist who has helmed the Jordan/Midland/Spyker/Force India team for four seasons and directed the newcomer Hispania Racing Team for three seasons (without a single championship point to show for it) until the team shut down. He's also co-founder of the Kodewa racing outfit responsible for the Lotus LMP2 program as well as its motorcycle startup, and is tipped to be pitching a Romanian entry to F1, but would, in all likelihood, base his operations in the UK.
As would Haas, despite its American origins. Apparently bearing no relation to Carl Haas (who ran teams in everything from Can-Am and NASCAR to Indy and even F1), as previously mentioned, the entry is being pitched by Gene Haas, founder of CNC tooling magnate Haas Automation and the Stewart-Haas Racing team with which the likes of Tony Stewart, Ryan Newman and Kurt Busch have all won races in the top-tier Sprint Cup – including the championship in 2011.
Both entries are reportedly pending confirmation from the FIA, but could be approved within the month and join the grid for next season.