Michael Andretti, IndyCar, 2021

F1 team entry “would do wonders for our brand” – Andretti

2021 F1 season

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Michael Andretti is still pursuing an entry into Formula 1 following his unsuccessful attempt to purchase Sauber, calling the series “the ultimate racing experience”.

The 59-year-old IndyCar champion and ex-F1 racer said he was “48 hours away” from concluding a deal earlier this year to buy the team which runs the Alfa Romeo-branded entry in the world championship. He previously made a bid to take over Force India when it went into administration in 2018. The team was sold to Lawrence Stroll and now competes as Aston Martin.

Andretti runs teams in IndyCar, Formula E and Extreme E but he told the Racer/Epartrade Online Race Industry Week a move into Formula 1 still appeals to him. “It’s the biggest racing series in the world and I think it could just do wonders for our brand,” he said.

“Internationally obviously, we are with Formula E and Extreme E. To do Formula 1 is the ultimate. I’ve always had interest in that.”

However as new team entrants are, from this year, required to pay a $200 million anti-dilution fee, and there are few opportunities to buy one of the existing teams, Andretti admitted opportunities for him to enter the series are scarce.

“It was really, really disappointing that [the Sauber] deal didn’t come together,” he said. “We were literally 48 hours away from getting the deal done at that time as we thought.

“I still very much would like to do it, opportunities are becoming less and less, teams aren’t really for sale right now. We have to see what happens in the future.

“There’s still interest. I love F1, it’s the ultimate racing experience, and for our brand would be just huge, it just takes us to the highest level you can be in.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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19 comments on “F1 team entry “would do wonders for our brand” – Andretti”

  1. Perhaps Haas the next time they attempt.

    1. Crossed my mind too. Mazapin to pay the big bucks to alfa and Haas to sell to an American

    2. I think most fans would probably prefer an Andretti buyout of Haas than a full-scale takeover by Mazepin Sr, @jerejj. But I would guess the latter is more likely.

      1. I predicted that last year, Mazepin pulling a Stroll on Hass, but Andretti wasn’t in the picture then.

        1. Scary thought… Imagine F1 becoming a billionaires’ children playground… Actually, do not imagine that: it’s too scary.

          1. Scary thought… Imagine F1 becoming a billionaires’ children playground… Actually, do not imagine that: it’s too scary.

            Wasn’t that what F1 was back in 1950’s?

          2. And how popular and successful F1 was back in the 50’s? Yeah.

          3. Too be honest F1 was always a sport for the rich look in the 50s and 60s it was all private money back then with the exceptions of Ferrari and most factory teams.

          4. Dex, well, clearly it must have been popular and successful enough for it to still exist today…

    3. Would Hass be a good proposition for anyone to buy out? They don’t have half the facilities that Sauber do. They’re spread thin across USA, UK and Italy. I suppose if Andretti still wanted a UK side to the US business, then it could work, bt would you be mainly buying your way onto the grid, with little other facilities to back it up?

    4. Isn’t the problem with buying HAAS is that it’s basically a worthless brand? Their chassis, aero, and drivetrain are brought in and they have no development engineering capacity to speak of. Better to buy Dallara, book an engine deal, and turn it back into a proper f1 team.

  2. I wonder, if the 2022 regulations really bring cars/competition closer, will the “entry fee” for a new F1 franchise increase or decrease.
    I mean, some may think that too many teams winning would dilute F1 prestige.

    1. it will stay the same for the duration of the Concord agreement (in other words until 2026).

  3. Biskit Boy (@sean-p-newmanlive-co-uk)
    30th November 2021, 12:38

    Andretti F1 team entry would do pretty good for the F1 brand too.

    1. The Problem is that Andretti doesn’t have nearly as much Rubles..hrrr… Dollars as Papa Mazepin. Papa Mazepin is “inside” already, wants to keep is kid in F1 at all cost and can jump at at the first opportunity, buy the team and rebrand. It would be fun to see LADA in F1.

      1. Didn’t we have LADA in F1 back in 2011 when Petrov was racing in Lotus Renault GP. I remember them having LADA as a sponsor

    2. Nothing would kick off F1 among U.S. race fans that that. Even U.S. Americans who know nothing about racing know who the Andrettis are. If Liberty had a couple bucks to loan Andretti to buy/start a team it would be paid off many times over.

  4. Nell (@imabouttogoham)
    30th November 2021, 23:24

    Andretti probably want more of a seat in the operations initially rather than running the whole show.

    Bit out of left field, but Williams-Andretti? Just an announcement like that would increase the value of the team IMO, which is precisely the fundamental goal of Dorilton.

    1. Maybe he’s holding out to buy McLaren, they have history after all…

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