Andretti, the most prominent among the teams showing interest in joining the F1 grid, is waiting for an imminent decision on whether their bid has been successful.
Nevertheless, the existing teams have expressed concerns about potential reduction of future earnings and insist that any newcomer must bring significant value to the series. This sentiment is also supported by F1 boss Stefano Domenicali.
Andretti has fortified its bid by partnering with Cadillac to badge a Renault power unit, but Vasseur argues that merely being an American project doesn’t make it viable.
“My standpoint is that the 10 teams that have invested heavily and persevered through tough times to maintain their presence on the grid, should only accommodate another team for exceptionally good reasons,” he stated.
“Merely having an American team isn’t compelling enough. Firstly, we already have an American team, thanks to Haas. Secondly, in my view, excelling in the country is more about the drivers.
“Consider the case of the Netherlands. They are currently enjoying tremendous success globally without a team of their own, all thanks to Max.
“My belief is that we already have a good footing in the US. If we aim to augment this success, it’s more about bringing an American driver onboard, rather than an American team.”
Michael Andretti on the grid
Photo by: Alexander Trienitz / F1 Flow Images
Questioned about his opinion if a major manufacturing team desired to enter F1, he reiterated: “Let me clarify again, we all have made significant collective efforts. Any new entrant must contribute to the mutual benefit of everyone in the paddock.
“The team must bring something meaningful to F1. I don’t believe the team’s nationality to be of any significance.”
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Red Bull’s Christian Horner remains uncertain about Cadillac’s association with the Andretti project.
“GM is a reputable brand, but I’m curious about their strategy,” Horner remarked. “I don’t presume they will set up a facility similar to ours. I believe it’s merely a badging exercise.”
When it was proposed that it might resemble the Ford/Red Bull Powertrains deal, he retorted: “True, but Ford isn’t pretending to be a competitor in F1.
“GM is currently partnered with Andretti, who doesn’t have an F1 entry at the moment.
“Now, the FIA will run their procedure. As with any such situation, the logistical problem of accommodating an 11th team arises.
“But the crux of the matter is, who’s going to foot the bill? If it undermines the existing 10, obviously, there will be issues.
“Liberty won’t be willing to dilute their share of the income. Hence, you have a stalemate.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Andretti’s F1 bid
What is the status of Andretti’s bid to join Formula 1?
Andretti is among the high-profile contenders expressing interest in joining the F1 grid. A decision on the success of their bid is expected soon.
What conditions do existing teams have for welcoming a new entrant?
Existing teams are concerned about potential income dilution and require any new entrant to bring substantial value to the series. This viewpoint is shared by F1 boss Stefano Domenicali.
How has Andretti bolstered its bid?
Andretti has strengthened its bid by partnering with Cadillac to use a Renault power unit. However, team principal Vasseur argues that being an American project alone is not enough.
Why does Vasseur believe an American team is not a good enough reason for entry?
Vasseur emphasizes the efforts made by the existing 10 teams and the need for exceptional reasons to welcome a new team. He suggests that increasing success in the US would be better achieved by having an American driver, as seen with Max Verstappen’s success in the Netherlands.
How do other F1 figures view Andretti’s involvement with Cadillac?
Red Bull boss Christian Horner remains skeptical, questioning the nature of Cadillac’s involvement and expressing doubts about the potential impact on F1. He believes it may be more of a badging exercise rather than a significant investment.
What are the concerns regarding accommodating an 11th team?
Apart from logistical challenges, the primary concern is who will bear the financial costs. Existing teams are wary of any dilution of their income and are cautious about accepting a new entrant that may negatively affect their financial interests.