F1’s decision to reject Andretti was “presented the right way” – Domenicali

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Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has defended the series’ handling of its refusal to allow Andretti to enter as an 11th team.

It announced last month it had rejected Andretti’s entry. F1 said the Andretti brand was not sufficiently well-known, cast doubt on their likely competitiveness and claimed the benefits of adding an 11th team were insufficient.

Domenicali said the subject of adding an 11th team “for sure is a point related to the Concorde Agreement” between the team, F1 and the FIA – which approved Andretti’s bid in October last year.

“It is a point of a joint work that has to be done between the FIA and FOM in regard to the different kinds of evaluation that we need to do,” Domenicali told investors in a call today.

“With regard to what has happened, I think that the process has been followed, and we presented the result in the right way.

“For the future it’s a matter of discussion, of course, with the teams, with the right commercial and technical propositions that will be discussed accordingly within this year.”

The current Concorde Agreement expires at the end of next year. Domenicali expects the coming negotiations between the parties involved will be straightforward.

“We expect to address the renewal of the Concorde Agreement with the teams very, very shortly,” he said. “Our view, that is basically shared with the teams, is that basically the Concorde Agreement will not need any substantial changes this time around.

“So we’re going to start very, very soon. We had priority to finalise before the end of season talking about regulations and other stuff with regard to other things that need to be solved before. So now we’re getting close to the time where we’re going to start this discussion, very, very shortly.”


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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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38 comments on “F1’s decision to reject Andretti was “presented the right way” – Domenicali”

  1. Not that confident everything was followed correctly especially as Domenicali says “I think that the process has been followed in the right way” well either it has or hasn’t…

    The other teams were against it because Toto and Co whipped up a storm and that was enough to say no.

  2. I hope F1 will follow up on their process and exclude the teams that will not show competitiveness this year.

    1. It’ll be great if some journalists have it in them to bring this up to those constantly underperforming teams. Every time!

      Being competitive for wins and podiums is now the standard. It should be brought up every single race to those who fail to meet that standard.

  3. an F1 franchise is worth a LOT of money. And who needs 22 cars? And Michael, just not that presentable is he. So, the value isn’t there, is where the evaluation process ended up. He can make the drinks company an offer

    1. What value does Haas bring though? Obviously the past few years we’ve have the comedy clown show but that’s ended this year but in real racing terms, absolutely zero value

      1. mmm, pretty huge whatabout! Haas has been in F1 for 10 years, nobody’s going to chuck them out so it’s a non question. The question is what would Andretti add, to the 10 teams that are F1 atm. It’s not as if they’re bringing Taylor Swift is it, or even Margot Robbie

        1. The answer has been explained many times and is painfully obvious: the Andretti brand is also valuable, hence GM partnering with them to enter the sport.

          1. Andretti brand lol, he has an Indycar team

        2. But if we are evaluating teams based on what they bring to the sport, surely it is right to consider existing teams by the same criteria. If Andretti would bring a greater value to the sport than Haas, which I think it’s arguable that they could, then it isn’t a good enough reason to exclude them.

      2. Haas’s value to F1 as of now is that they have been in F1 for 10 years I think, and they have demonstrated that they can abibe the rules of F1, safely and manage their employees in the padock without any difficulty. Any team can of course achieve the same think but they have to be there 1st. Haas are there.

    2. What’s with the weird ad hominem attack on Andretti’s appearance? If a woman tried to enter a team would you reject her bid because she was ugly?

      1. It’s pretentious, and overweight, and it’s TV. He thinks he can eat too much and cover it with a fake tan and designer shades. I think fat people generally are out of place in sport, lack discipline and set a bad example

    3. No, the entry was denied before the evaluation process ever started. For a franchise that wants to grow their US market, claiming Andretti is “unknown” and “brings little value” shows just how parochial and narrow-minded FOM is.

      What F1 needs is more teams, more cars, and more importantly, a path for new drivers. This season has zero rookies, and six drivers over 34.

      They denied Andretti because they decided $200 million for an extortion fee wasn’t enough– the new Concorde agreement will certainly raise that to $500 million.

      Audi’s about to pull out before getting in, Ford will probably use the investigation with Horner as a reason to pull out, and frankly, I expect the racing in 2026 to be abysmal. As far as I’m concerned, Formula 1 is still on the road to irrelevancy sometime around 2030.

      1. You are of course entitled to say entry was denied before the process even started, but that is just your opinion. However the teams and FOm made their oposition to Andretti joining the grid clear. So no suprises there. Fom as the commercial right holder has every right to making that decision, which they did.

        Again an opinion that F1 needs more teams, but someone has to take a cut for any new team to get onto the grid, and at this moment no one is willing to do so. The way the teams and fom see this is presume is the grid is stable for the 1st time in a long while, and all the teams seem at least from the outside financially stable, may be making some money, and are actually worth something as a commercial proposition.

        Its is perfectly true that Andretti’s bid was rejected largely because the anti dilution fee was though to little to cover the cost of sharing the revenues the teams get now with an extra team. But also generally, the value of the sport and a place in the paddock is now worth more, and the teams that have been through the hard times see that and are not too willing to share it. If you wanted to join the grid, that stance would be annoying and i can understand that.

        Audi may pull out and maybe they won’t. Why any self confesed fan would want the 1st new power unit manufacturer/supplier to buy into a team to withdraw seems weird to me. As for ford pulling out will see. F1 is never abysmal to any true fan. The cars are back on track, the excitement is building, and we get to see what the new season brings. I’ll be there and am sure you will too, with gritted teeth, but you will.

    4. @zann I honestly don’t understand why any fan of the SPORT would be against new teams joining?

      More teams means more cars which brings more opportunities for new drivers, designers, engineers etc… as well as more competition.

      From a fans point of view there is literally zero downside to seeing more teams to bring the grid back upto it’s 26 grid spot capacity.

      Maybe it’s just that the newer show over sport netflix liberty media indoctrinated fans don’t know that F1 used to actually be a sport that had full grids where there was actually space on the grid for young rookie drivers (As well as new designers, engineers, mechanics etc..) to regularly be afforded opportunities to come in and actually race for a smaller team to learn with less pressure.

      The Liberty media franchise closed shop cartel nonsense literally has zero benefit for fans.

      1. @roger-ayles +1

      2. More cars after a certain point means more clutter and cars being held up in Q1. More fake safety cars and generally less proper racing. So, afaic, 20 cars is the right number.

        I know there are some wrinkly old fans with misty memories of when they were young :) but a track has a width and a length, so do the cars, and they have to fit and be followed on TV as a story

    5. @zann FOM job is to maximize revenue for all teams and shouldn’t worry about how this revenue will be split.
      How are they involved in decisions making, who gets to race in rules of the sport/show, is beyond me.

      1. well FOM is involved in the show, as a spectacle. This is where the money comes from

        1. @zann Yes, they should make “show”, but they shouldn’t have any say in who can race!

      2. Ay.. they are commercial rights holder. It is literally how they make F1 make money and how those funds are shared out. They are not involved in decision making regarding the rules, that is the FIA. All commercial aspect are FOM & Liberty’s business.

        1. @Bonbonjai “They are not involved in decision making regarding the rules” Tell me you don’t follow F1 without telling me you don’t follow F1.

  4. “With regard to what has happened, I think that the process has been followed, and we presented the result in the right way.“

    Considering a lot of those results were complete nonsense like suggesting any new team must be immediately competing for wins and podiums.

    They’re not really going to convince anybody that this decision was made purely to keep from dividing the money pot further.

  5. There are two things F1 desperately needs: 1) At least 11 teams; and 2) Get rid of those special bonuses.

    1. If this season sees a consistently uncompetitive team, FOM may have no choice but to use the andretti order and axe that team. Leaving only 9.

  6. The saying goes that stupidity knows no bounds. I wondered what that meant. Now I’m sure I know.

  7. I’d rather have the right result, presented in a “very, very” bad way.

    1. Coventry Climax
      29th February 2024, 9:39

      My thoughts exactly.

  8. That’s the problem with superfluous managers like Domenicali, they are obsessed with ‘the process’.

    Let’s see how ‘be competitive for podiums and wins’ works out for the nine current F1 teams…

  9. This situation seems comparable to footballs Super League that was proposed a few years back. Protect the big teams and excluding the rest. Now F1 is doing the same and some fans even agree with this ludicrous explanation.

    If someone has the resources to create a team and build a car that complies with the regulations they should be allowed to compete. What kind of a pseudo competition do we have if no one is allowed to challenge ‘The Ten’?
    I want to see Haas, Alpine and ‘Minardi but without the likability’ get their asses handed to them by a new team that wants to challenge the established order. Whether that’ll be Andretti or some other team that wants to give it a shot.

    1. If someone has the resources to create a team and build a car that complies with the regulations they should be allowed to compete.

      They are, in theory. The official rules state that 13 separate teams can participate, and the FIA controls who joins and who doesn’t.

      The problem is that the FIA has made a shady deal with a certain group – which is definitely not a cartel – and has, for reasons best known to then-president Jean Todt, given it extraordinary and undue power. This ‘Concorde Agreement’ is absolutely ready for a good court case. As we saw a few years ago, even the hint of such a move had Liberty running scared and throwing huge sums of money at whoever was willing to make a complaint (in that case; Sauber and Force India).

  10. So, being petty and condescending is the right way?

  11. I do agree that it was “presented” correctly in that it is clear who approved and who did not.

    The rejection has always been farcical considering Andretti has GM as a partner.

  12. I loved the patronising, paternalistic posturing of this group “inviting” Andretti to a “meeting” so they could pay them on the head and say good work, but not quite up to our lofty standards and ethics. Pop back in a couple of years and we’ll have another look. Now pop off there’s good fellows.
    The temerity of them.
    These FOM/F1 people seem to believe they have a veto power, when in essence they have the ability only to create an impasse. Someone else will be required to resolve that.

  13. The rejection may well have been presented ‘the right way’ – but the actual content of, and justification for, the rejection was completely wrong.

  14. Please, just resign, Domenicali. All fans want to see more teams. Wouldn’t it be great to have 3 new teams and 6 new hungry junior drivers this year? Instead, we are about to have the most boring season ever thanks to their obsession of keeping status-quo and greediness over prize money. It makes me sick.

  15. Please, just resign, Domenicali.

    He’s just the spokesman.

    Having an American media executive say these same things rubbed a lot of Europeans the wrong way, so they hired someone with a recognizable ‘F1 face’ to read out the lines. Domenicali fits the bill perfectly; as is clear from his time as Ferrari’s team principal, he’s not very politically savvy, nor confrontational. He’ll play along.

    Every now and then there’ll be actual quotes from Domenicali, and they’re often almost unintelligible. Stuff like this gem: “We had priority to finalise before the end of season talking about regulations and other stuff with regard to other things that need to be solved before.”

  16. As an Institutional Investor and shareholder of FOM, I’m not happy that FOM rejected Andretti. There is no cost to shareholders in adding Andretti, there is only upside. If there is a cost to any stakeholders, it’s either to the other ten teams in dilution or to FOM if they held payments to other ten teams neutral.
    FOM is placing the needs of the teams ahead of the shareholders. Any dilution in payments due to Andretti can be offset with a reduction in the cost cap.

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