Andretti hit back at F1 entry rejection for 2025 and 2026 Formula 1 seasons

Andretti released a statement on Friday to make two points regarding the process of their attempt to join F1 and the sport’s stakeholders’ claims that they didn’t join a meeting in December; watch every F1 race in 2024 live on Sky Sports F1

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Martin Brundle believes that F1 rejecting Andretti’s bid may put pressure on relationships between the FIA and F1

Andretti have responded to Formula 1’s rejection of their bid to enter the championship.

The American outfit’s bid, which has been headed by former McLaren driver Michael Andretti and his father Mario, the 1978 world champion, had passed through the initial approval processes set out by the FIA, motorsport’s governing body, in October but it also crucially required approval from F1 on the commercial merits of the application.

Formula One Management, the sport’s commercial rights holder, announced its decision in a lengthy statement on Wednesday after several months of commercial assessments and outlined multiple reasons why it had concluded that “the presence of an 11th team would not, on its own, provide value to the Championship”.

They have kept the door open for Andretti to make a bid to enter in 2028.

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In the statement, F1 claimed Andretti failed to attend an in-person meeting when invited on December 12, 2023 as the “applicant did not take us up on this offer”.

Andretti, whom says “our work continues at pace”, have hit back at that particular part of F1’s statement.

“We were not aware that the offer of a meeting had been extended and would not declining a meeting with Formula One management,” added the statement.

“An in-person meeting to discuss commercial matters would be and remains of paramount importance to Andretti Cadillac. We welcome the opportunity to meet with Formula One management and have written to them confirming our interest.”

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Craig Slater explains why Formula 1 has turned down Andretti’s attempts in becoming the 11th team in 2025 or 2026

Andretti were targeting 2026

Andretti’s bid was for an entry into either the 2025 or 2026 season – the latter will see significant changes to F1’s technical regulations.

F1’s reasoning placed particular significance on the fact Andretti, who have partnered with luxury car brand Cadillac, would have entered F1 requiring a customer engine supply from one of the sport’s existing manufacturers.

General Motors, which owns Cadillac, last November applied to become a power-unit manufacturer in F1 but not until 2028.

Offering potential hope for four years’ time should Andretti apply again, F1 said it “would look differently on an application” for 2028 if General Motors were able to provide an engine.

Image: Michael Andretti has been leading Andretti's attempt to join F1

Andretti have also hinted the process F1 took was too long as part of their response to the rejection.

“When Andretti Cadillac entered the FIA expression of interest process almost a year ago, the preferred first year of participation was indicated as 2025,” Andretti explained.

“The FIA approved our application, with no specific limitation on whether the entry was for 2025 or 2026. Andretti Cadillac has been operating with 2026 as the year of entry for many months now. The technicality of 2025 still being part of the application is a result of the length of this process.”

Mario Andretti posted on X on Thursday that he was “devastated” by the decision, while the Andretti outfit itself formally said in a statement that they “strongly disagree” with the outcome of F1’s report.

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