The Haas F1 workforce principal tells TG all about his Toyota Tundra vehicles and previous Alfa Romeos

The place I come from in South Tyrol, which is northern Italy simply on the border with Austria and within the Dolomites mainly, there isn’t any racing happening. My household had no historical past in automobiles or something both, however I discovered motorsport by way of TV. So then I begged my father yearly to take me to the one hill climb that occurred in our space. On the time my dad and mom drove a Fiat 124 and I’d all the time get automotive sick driving by way of the mountains. 

My father had a Vespa then too, and I’ve nonetheless bought that now really. I had it restored just a few years in the past.

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After I handed my take a look at my first automotive was a Fiat 500, the unique after all. I had no cash, so the one factor I may afford was this Fiat and it was like freedom on wheels. I did an apprenticeship as a mechanic so I may repair it up myself, however I used to be by no means into tuning or modifying automobiles. 

After I’d achieved my Nationwide Service in Italy I moved to Belgium to start out my profession with racing automobiles. I had an Alfa Romeo Giulietta on the time – the sq. one from the late Nineteen Seventies and early 80s – which I really nonetheless personal. My father gave it to me and now that he’s handed away, I’ll by no means promote it. 

After that I had an Alfa Romeo Spider. I want I nonetheless owned that. Then I moved to the UK and was in firm automobiles for a very long time. So, once I was at Prodrive I had a Subaru Impreza, after which once I moved to M Sport I had the weirdest automobiles ever – every part from a Ford Scorpio to a Ford Cougar coupe and a seven-seat first-generation Ford Galaxy with the large 2.8-litre VR6 Volkswagen engine in it. 

Then I moved to Jaguar and had XKR coupes as firm automobiles, earlier than I ultimately purchased myself a 997-generation Porsche 911. That was most likely my favorite automotive I’ve owned, however I haven’t had a Porsche since as a result of I don’t have time to essentially get pleasure from a automotive in the intervening time.

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I moved to the USA 16 years in the past, and ever since then I’ve run round in pickup vehicles. Toyota Tundras in reality. At all times Toyota Tundras. I’m an enormous fan now. They’re dependable, comfy and massive – you already know, once I got here to the States the Tundra was greater than my lounge within the UK. You possibly can most likely match my previous Fiat 500 inside one. 

I all the time choose to drive myself and by no means like being pushed. Even on F1 race weekends I drive round myself as a result of then I don’t have to attend for anyone or have anybody ready for me. At Haas now we have no affiliation with a producer so I’m simply in regular rental automobiles. Meaning I’ve pushed a number of automobiles in my time. Numerous good automobiles, but in addition a number of actually dangerous automobiles. 

I don’t race although. I by no means have. I imply clearly within the rally days I drove the automobiles as a result of they have been highway authorized and also you needed to drive them to move them, however I by no means had the cash to get into racing initially and I don’t suppose I’ve bought the expertise. I’d simply get it mistaken and there could be lots of people ready for me to make errors as a result of I’ve criticised a number of drivers through the years. The very last thing I need to do is put myself on the market. Keep away from disappointment.

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