Haas’ new backers Rich Energy has set its sights on challenging Red Bull both “on and off the track” upon its entry to Formula 1. 

The American squad unveiled a new black-and-gold livery for the upcoming 2019 season in a move that reflects its new title sponsorship deal with British energy drinks company Rich Energy. 

Speaking at the event in London on Thursday, Rich Energy CEO William Storey said: "We’re absolutely over the moon to be in Formula 1, it’s a big platform for our brand. 

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“We’re looking forward to taking Red Bull on both on and off the track and challenging them.”

Storey claimed Rich Energy has taken a “huge” amount of business away from Red Bull and is confident success can be translated into on-track performance in its new partnership with Haas. 

“I think we’ve already beaten them, we’ve got a better-looking car, that’s a bit biased there,” he said. We’re expanding very quickly, we’re taking a huge amount of business from them. 

“Some of the biggest drinks distributors in Europe are de-listing Red Bull now, and I think our results will start to speak for themselves. Formula 1’s a wonderful platform for us. 

“We’re with the best-run team in my opinion, and equally importantly, lovely people. We’re delighted to work with Haas and we want to do it on a very long-term basis.” 

Asked if Rich Energy’s goal is to wind up Red Bull, Storey replied: “No, not at all. I think Red Bull are a brilliantly-run business. 

“I think Dietrich Mateschitz is a clever guy. I think he’s created a category in 1987. 

“We just feel we’ve got a better product and a better brand, and we feel there is a little bit of apathy and dare I say hubris in the market place, and we think we’ve got a real opportunity to beat them… off the track!” 

Haas continued its year-on-year improvement in F1 as it secured fifth place in the constructors’ championship in 2018, though it ended up over 300 points adrift of a third-placed Red Bull squad that claimed four wins. 

Haas team principal Gunther Steiner believes that while such a target may be unrealistic for 2019, he defended Rich Energy's high goals. 

“I think you have to try hard,” he added. “If you have no targets, you never achieve anything.

“They are good in racing, they are very good, but you never know. Last year, I think we had the fourth-fastest car, we finished fifth, I know about that, but the next one up was Red Bull. 

“We can try. If we achieve it or not, I don’t know, but if you don’t try, for sure you don’t achieve it. Why would you do it if you don’t put your target high?” 

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