One of the applicants rejected by the FIA for the 11th spot on the grid, Rodin Cars founder David Dicker has revealed he made a play for AlphaTauri but that the team’s $800-900m price tag was “unviable”.
Earlier this week the FIA confirmed one team had been successful in applying to join the Formula 1 grid, that being Andretti-Cadillac.
But while Andretti by no means has an open door to the grid, for Rodin, LKYSUNZ, and HiTech GP, Monday’s announcement marked the end of the Formula 1 dream. That’s, of course, unless they can buy one of the existing teams.
Rodin boss: I’m not just going to go away and sulk
Australian billionaire Dicker reveals he tried to do just that, talking with Red Bull about buying their junior team AlphaTauri. The price though put him off.
“Well, I do have some talks about buying AlphaTauri, but the price is commercially unviable as far as I could understand it,” Dicker told RACER.
“You’ve still got to look at these things in commercial terms. And the F1 guys are experts on the motorsport side, but on the business side, I’m not so sure.”
He however, won’t be slinking off into the background with Carlin’s majority shareholding as of the start of this year saying he’s “pretty pissed off” so he won’t be disappearing to “sulk”.
What he will be doing, he isn’t yet ready to say.
“I’ve had a few people talk about this and that, but nothing tremendously concrete,” he said. “I do have a couple of things that I might get a bit more info in the next week or two about some possibilities there. But the value proposition is weak.
“I do have a project that I’m working on. It’s interesting and exciting, but I can’t talk about it quite yet, because I haven’t quite got it.
“But let me put it this way: I’m pretty pissed off about not getting into Formula 1, so I’m not just going to go away and sulk.
“That’s just the way that the way I am. I mean, you want to do things, and that’s what life’s about. You just try to do them. And if you can’t do it one way, then look for another way, or other ways, of doing things.”
Dicker ‘probably screwed’ buying Williams
That other way has seen Dicker talking with Red Bull about AlphaTauri while he was also in the mix when Williams was up for sale in 2020.
But with Red Bull wanting close on $1bn for AlphaTauri, today he regrets not getting his hands on Williams which was bought by Dorilton Capital.
“Well, I would (buy a team) if I thought there was a viable route, but paying $800-900million for (AlphaTauri) would probably not be considered commercially viable. But you know, just got to see if there’s possibilities,” he said.
“I made a mistake when Williams was for sale because I could have bought that pretty easily. And I didn’t read the strategic landscape correctly on that with the way we made the bid, which in hindsight, was obviously a mistake. But there it goes.
“I had a lot of talks with Williams about buying Williams – saw all the numbers and sat through presentations and made them an offer and everything – and I’ve had a few guys talking about other teams from time to time.
“Mostly Sauber and Haas, which have more or less been on and off the market for years, and could have probably been bought for much lower numbers that made a lot more sense. And like I said, I probably screwed that up.”