US expansion warning given as Adrian Newey weighs in on ‘strange formula’ – F1 news round-up

Henry Valantine
Max Verstappen & Sergio Perez, Red Bull, 2024 Japanese Grand Prix. F1 news

Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez leave the garage.

It may be a non-race Sunday, but that doesn’t mean the world of F1 news has been empty – far from it, in fact.

Multiple World Champions have been in the headlines, and there is a lot to get through as part of Sunday’s headlines, so let us dive straight in, shall we?

Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso Red Bull reports quashed

Respected Formula 1 journalist Mark Hughes has reported that both Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso have attempted to make a move to Red Bull, but were rebutted in their attempts.

Writing in response to a fan’s tweet claiming Hamilton, Alonso, Leclerc and Norris have all turned down a Red Bull seat within the last 12 months, Hughes responded: “That’s just plain untrue.

“Neither Leclerc, Hamilton nor Alonso were offered a place. Hamilton and Alonso both tried and were told no.”

Read more: Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso ‘both told no’ as Red Bull theory quashed

Mario Andretti makes further US expansion warning

When former F1 chairman Chase Carey said last year that Las Vegas, Miami and New York were Liberty Media’s targets for further expansion into the United States, 1978 World Champion Mario Andretti has warned against a fourth race Stateside, with Austin having been popular for over a decade now.

He told Sports Illustrated: “Personally, I think you have to be a bit careful not to overstay.

“I think there has to be something that you really look forward to. Sometimes if you have too much of a good thing, you don’t appreciate it as much. That’s my opinion.

“I can take it any way they’d like, but I think three Formula 1 races where, 75 years ago, we were hoping for at least two, but now we have three. They’re three very popular races. We’ve seen that with the attendance and so forth. Let’s not try to overdo it.”

Read more: Mario Andretti issues ‘don’t overdo it’ warning amid major F1 expansion plans

‘Strange formula’ assessment made on 2026 engines by Adrian Newey

Adrian Newey explained that, due to the unique demands that are set to be placed on the 2026 cars with the new engines acting as energy generators as well as combustion engines, the cars may need to run at high revs even through slow corners.

That leaves an intriguing dilemma for now, as he explained.

“It’s certainly going to be a strange formula in as much as the engines will be working flat-chat as generators just about the whole time,” Newey told Motorsport.com.

“So, the prospect of the engine working hard in the middle of Loews hairpin is going to take some getting used to.”

Read more: Adrian Newey opens up on ‘strange formula’ around 2026 engine regulations

Alain Prost on the ‘perception’ of Max Verstappen’s titles

Alain Prost explained that, despite Max Verstappen’s runaway success, he is concerned that the recent titles may be seen as ‘not as good’ considering the number one and number two status employed at Red Bull and other teams on the grid.

“Max is one of the best drivers today. Maybe the best, you have to accept that,” Prost told Sports Illustrated.

“If you look at the perception that people can have – he’s winning because of this car, so in fact, it’s not as good for himself, which is a shame, because I think he’s really part of the success.

“But the big teams like Ferrari, like Mercedes, like Red Bull obviously, they are going to be more organised and have more chance to win if they have a number one driver, a favourite driver in the team. And then they concentrate on that. So it’s a little bit of a shame at the moment, we do not have that.”

Read more: Alain Prost explains why Max Verstappen titles worth less as F1 dominance rolls on

Imola looking for ‘long-term’ F1 commitment

With its deal to continue in F1 up in the next couple of years, the mayor of Imola has called for a “long-term” commitment to have two races held in Italy moving forward.

Imola and Monza have been on the calendar together since the Covid-hit season of 2020, when Mugello was also on the calendar, and despite the popularity of the circuit, there is no guarantee

“While we are waiting to experience the excitement of this year’s Grand Prix, from May 17-19, we are continuing with work and teamwork on several levels to keep these two GPs in Italy and give them a long-term perspective,” said Imola mayor Marco Panieri.

“Imola is ready for this year, its territorial system has already been made and is making important investments on the structures, the track, the hospitality and the multi-functionality of the spaces, working hard on the valorisation of the Motor Valley and in particular of Terre e Motori.”

Read more: Much-loved F1 circuit wants ‘invaluable’ long-term commitment with future in doubt