Team bosses respond to fresh Andretti rumours as new team reports intensify

Sam Cooper
Michael Andretti and the F1 team bosses.

Andretti have done everything asked of them so far but appear no closer to an F1 spot.

Formula 1 bosses have reiterated that they are waiting for new information after reports that Andretti are close to being given the green light from the FIA.

The sport’s governing body’s Expression of Interest process has turned into quite a lengthy one with still no information as to who exactly has applied and who has passed the test.

That leaves only rumours and a strong one in the F1 paddock is that Andretti will be given the nod by the FIA before embarking on their quest to convince the teams.

F1 teams in the dark about Andretti FIA bid

The Expression of Interest process is just the first step in what Andretti and General Motors hope will end with their cars on the grid as to when or if that will happen remains undecided.

The FIA have always been the more open to teams joining with the current Concorde Agreement allowing a maximum of 12 constructors but Formula One Management and the existing teams have shown a hesitancy, most unwilling to risk diluting their own profits.

Andretti have answered every question thrown at them so far by promising a renewed interest from an American audience and having one of the biggest car companies in the world backing them in the form of General Motors. But despite all this, it still seems more likely than not that their request will be denied by the sport’s commercial arm.

As for the teams, they remain waiting in the wings with no new information having been presented to them since the FIA process opened up earlier this year.

McLaren, with Zak Brown’s American routes and relationship with the Andretti family, have been one of few teams more open to seeing them on the grid but Brown suggested the current anti-dilution fund of $200 million is no longer fair value.

“I’ve not heard anything new recently,” Brown told the media in Singapore. “It’s not been spoken about so I think our view’s unchanged and [we’re] just going to wait and see how the process plays out.

“I think the one thing I would say is the value of a Formula 1 team and an entry, from what it was five years ago is… the sport is worth substantially more so I think that that element needs to be discussed. But beyond that, I’m not sitting on any new information that I hadn’t heard months ago and just going to wait and see what the FIA and Formula 1 do.”

If Brown can be seen as one of the more supportive team bosses, Toto Wolff is on the other end of the scale. The Austrian suggested that F1 has survived through the COVID pandemic because they stuck together and urged decision makers Mohammed Ben Sulayem and Stefano Domenicali to “take the right decisions for Formula 1.

“I think why Formula 1 and the teams have survived in the last years is because we all stuck together: the FIA, FOM and the 10 teams,” Wolff said.

“We need to protect the sport, we are holding this sensitive sport that’s growing at the moment in our hands and that’s why the right decisions need to be taken, all of us together when it comes to – let’s say – a mindset and then obviously the FIA and FOM, when it comes to these decisions, because it’s out of the teams’ hands.

PlanetF1.com recommends

The F1 2023 World Championship standings without Red Bull

The most fined drivers and teams on the F1 2023 grid

“But I would hope that Mohammed Ben Sulayem and Stefano will take the right decisions for Formula 1.”

Guenther Steiner, whose Haas team arguably have the most to lose should Andretti join the grid, was more in line with Brown, stating he wants to see the anti-dilution fund raised in the next round of Concorde Agreement discussions.

“I haven’t heard anything that it was accepted or not accepted. I don’t know and I’m sure Stefano knows how to deal with this in our best interest,” the Haas boss said.

“We put our faith in FOM to deal with it and as Zak said, the teams are worth now a lot more than when we’re deciding the Concorde agreement in 2020, where some teams we’re struggling to stay in business, and were worth basically nothing, so the market has changed, but in the end, I don’t have any news about it so I just wait to hear and then F1 will do the deal for us.”

Read next: Oscar Piastri commits long-term future to McLaren with new contract