Formula 1: Did Rich Energy actually announce anything?

William Storey, Rich Energy, Formula 1 (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
William Storey, Rich Energy, Formula 1 (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images) /

Rich Energy promised a Formula 1 announcement on Sunday. They made the “announcement”. But did they actually announce anything?

For weeks, controversial former Haas Formula 1 title sponsor Rich Energy have been teasing a return to Formula 1 and dubbing it “the greatest comeback since Lazarus”, and this past Sunday, company co-founder and CEO William Storey took to Twitter to make a long-awaited announcement.

Storey, who also serves as the CEO of Wolf Data Systems and the managing director of Wolf Jerky (#FeedTheWolf), had initially been planning on making an announcement during the first week of February, but it got pushed back to the second week out of a need to “respect the launch schedule”.

The announcement was set for Sunday, February 14 at 9:00 a.m. ET (2:00 p.m. GMT).

When it was announced at that time that the announcement had been delayed by an hour due to a media request and then nothing was said immediately after that hour had passed, many fans assumed — like they had done all along — that this was nothing more than an attention seeking scam about.

That didn’t turn out to be completely true.

The 42-year-old British businessman came on-screen a little bit late, but he arrived nonetheless, sipping from a “magnificent” can of Rich Energy amid the brand’s alleged worldwide renaissance which he claims to have led following a disastrously bizarre sequence of events in the summer of 2019 that ultimately led to a very premature termination of the Haas partnership.

Two clips were posted, one at 10:20 a.m. ET and another at 10:36 a.m. ET, but was anything actually announced in this long awaited announcement?

Fans waited with bated breath for Storey simply to name the team with which Rich Energy will supposedly be partnering for the upcoming season, especially since the one-week delay supposedly had to do with the launch schedule.

No such luck.

The wait continues.

He named a bunch of teams, but nothing regarding a specific partner.

There were a few takeaways, but several of the things he mentioned had already been revealed in a previous video/previous tweets.

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He stated that Rich Energy had explored entering Formula 1 as an 11th team next year with the new rules and regulations slated to take effect, but that they ultimately decided that it would be better to partner with an existing team.

He noted that they would not become that team’s title sponsor until 2022, but he added that a friend had agreed on a deal to take a majority stake in that mystery team (but not actually done so yet) for the 2021 season, with Rich Energy becoming a partner.

That acquisition still hasn’t been announced, but we will soon know whether or not that has come to fruition with the season scheduled to get underway next month.

Said Storey:

"“I have been looking for a way in which Rich Energy can return, both optimally for us and to help the team we are going to work with. Serendipitously, a strategic ally of Rich Energy, has purchased – or agreed to purchase – a majority stake in an existing team.“We did explore with the new regulations actually entering our own team for 2022, called Rich Energy F1 team, but a friend of ours has agreed a deal for a majority stake in an F1 team, and we will become a partner for that team for 2021. Once that acquisition is announced, we will become the title sponsor for 2022.”"

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Preseason testing is scheduled to take place at Bahrain International Circuit from Friday, March 12 to Sunday, March 14, and the 2021 season is scheduled to get underway at the same venue with the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday, March 28 following a coronavirus pandemic restriction-related schedule change.