Rich Energy's alleged termination of its sponsorship of Haas in F1 has suddenly taken a new twist, with the company's main shareholders now trying to save the deal with US outfit.
The energy drink company posted a message on Twitter late in the day on Wednesday that it had terminated its title sponsorship agreement with Haas.
This morning however, Haas responded with a tweet of its own, with team principal Guenther Steiner stating that as far as his team was concerned, Rich Energy was still the outfit's title sponsor.
"Rich Energy is currently the title partner of Haas F1 Team," wrote Steiner. "I cannot comment further on the contractual relationship between our two parties due to commercial confidentiality."
According to reporting from Motorsport.com's Adam Cooper, prominent Rich Energy shareholders have jumped in and rebuked company CEO William Storey, who either posted or authorized Wednesday's message on Twitter.
"The deal is not terminated and William has no authority to do so. The investors are trying to clear up the PR mess, but it's business as usual," a source told Motorsport.com.
It is understood that former Sainsbury boss Justin King - the father of IndyCar and F2 racer Jordan King and who sits on the Rich Energy board - is currently managing the situation and interfacing with Haas to try and save the deal.
The Rich Energy name was still displayed on Haas' cars and hospitality unit at Silverstone on Thursday morning.