Domenicali criticises Andretti ‘shouting and pushing the system’ to get into F1 · RaceFans

Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has criticised Michael Andretti’s attempts to enter the championship, saying remarks made by the former driver were “not smart”.

Last month Andretti accused existing F1 teams who oppose him entering the sport of “very greedy thinking”.

The FIA subsequently opened an applications process for new entrants to the championship 10 days ago. They have been given the choice of entering in 2025, 2026 or 2027.

Domenicali told Sky F1 is “very welcoming of everyone that is bringing value to the racing” and pointed out other potential entries besides Andretti’s have emerged.

He denied the series regards Andretti’s entry as unwelcome. “That is not a problem of not welcoming because that has been a wrong wording,” he said.

“We need to respect everyone. There are teams like Mario and Michael Andretti being very vocal about their will to enter Formula 1 but in my view were not smart to say that teams are greedy to protect themself. But that’s my opinion.

“There are others that are much less vocal that would like to come into Formula 1. So there is a process to respect and we will make sure together with the FIA that the process will be respected.”

Andretti’s hopes of entering a team have been known for many months. He has previously attempted to buy into existing teams, such as Force India (now known as Aston Martin) and Alfa Romeo (run by Sauber).

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After FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem announced the governing body would allow new teams to apply to enter the sport, Andretti’s group issued a press release revealing it had agreed a deal with General Motors brand Cadillac to co-operate on an entry into the championship.

The Andretti Group also competes in IndyCar, Formula E, Extreme E and IMSA. It is building an extensive new headquarters in Indianapolis at a cost of £170 million.

However existing F1 teams have expressed scepticism at the need to expand the grid, pointing out that doing so would reduce their earnings from the sport. New teams are required to pay an “anti-dilution fee” of $200 million which is shared among the existing entrants.

No new team can enter the championship without the support of both F1 and the FIA, the sport’s governing body. Asked whether F1 would allow an 11th team in, Domenicali said “if all the elements are there, they will be very welcome. There are a lot of dimensions to consider.

“We don’t have to overreact because someone is pushing the system,” he added. “We need to take action because I believe that today what is more vital is to protect the growth of the sport and also the sustainability of the teams that have invested in Formula 1 in the times where things were different. The value of that investment today for the pure commercial point of view is much more different than was just couple of years ago.

“So I think that the process that will be done will be done seriously in the right way, and no one can put that with the anxiety to take the right decision because someone is shouting and some other less shouting.”

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