Andretti's fiery response to two key points in Formula 1's justification for its rejection raises some new questions as well as providing answers.
Andretti has issued a new statement two days after the Formula 1 commercial rights holder formally rejects a place on the Formula 1 grid for 2025 or 2026, a decision that comes just months after the FIA gave the green light to his application.
An initial statement from Andretti said he “strongly disagrees” with Formula 1's decision and insisted he will continue to work on his Formula 1 car.
Now its latest statement specifically addresses two of the reasons for F1's emphatic rejection.
It takes aim at both the idea that Andretti was still considering going into 2025 – which F1 suggested was too ambitious to be competitive – and that he had avoided meeting with F1 management.
Andretti's full statement
- When Andretti Cadillac entered the FIA Expression of Interest process approximately a year ago, the first preferred year for entry was set as 2025. The FIA granted our application, without any specific restrictions on whether entry was for 2025 or 2026. Andretti Cadillac has been eyeing 2026 as its entry year for several months now. The technical aspect of 2025 that is still part of the application is a result of the length of this process.
- We were not aware of the extension of the meeting offer and would not refuse a meeting with Formula 1 management. A personal meeting to discuss business matters will be and remains of the utmost importance to Andretti Cadillac. We welcome the opportunity to meet with Formula 1 management and have written to them to confirm our interest.
Andretti concluded his statement by saying, “Our work continues at a rapid pace.”
Andretti also claims that F1's offer for a meeting was sent to its spam folder, according to News agency.
Regardless of whether that is true or not, it only serves to further sour the already tense public feud between Andretti and the F1 gatekeeper.
Scott Mitchell Malm
Andretti Cadillac's clarifications in response to two specific parts of the Formula One justification are very important. But they don't explain everything as much as necessary.
The vague claim that Andretti was unaware that Formula One had offered a face-to-face meeting seems strange at first. Formula One would not lie about such a fact in an official statement given the potential for legal action in the future – so the offer must have been extended.
That's why the suggestion that a vital Formula 1 invite has landed in the spam folder and been missed is truly significant (as well as surprising and twistingly entertaining).
If that were the case, it would be perfect something If so, it would remove a big question mark over Andretti's behaviour. It wasn't just a matter of mocking and saying “no” to Formula One's invitation, which could reflect very poorly on those involved.
Presumably, Formula One did not feel obligated to pursue the invitation for this very reason – Andretti ignoring the offer would seem to help Formula One build its case against it. What we don't know is whether Andretti Try To have another meeting once you realize the supposed email problem. Or if this had just happened. She's seeking a meeting now, and the fact that she's asking for it publicly lends some credence to the idea that she didn't really realize the initial offer existed.
But beyond the ignored emails and spam filters, the other point Andretti makes is huge – which is that he's preparing for 2026, not 2025.
If so, it is strange that it was not mentioned in the information exchanged with F1 about its application. F1 clearly operated on the firm belief/expectation that Andretti was only looking at 2025, because that's what the main parts of its rejection are centered around.
In fact, some of the strongest language has been devoted to the possibility that Andretti might want to build one car for 2025 and a completely different car under the new rules for 2026. Formula 1 said it “gives us reason to question their understanding of the scope of the challenge involved”. “.
So, if Andretti Cadillac has “already been working with 2026 as the entry year for several months now” as it claims, that would undermine the strength and validity of a fundamental part of Formula One's justification.
But the potentially confusing factor here is that Michael Andretti categorically stated that his organization was “still gunning for 2025” only in October of last year.
Of course, that could have been true at the time, and Andretti Cadillac zeroed in on 2026 very soon after. This may have been “several months” ago.
But it's fair to say that's a moot point at the moment, and one that Andretti might be able to clarify with F1 if she gets the personal meeting she wants to arrange late.
There is no denying that Andretti could have some legitimate grievances about the points he raises here, and some justification for Formula 1 to reject the offer.
But treating the F1 statement in this way has raised new questions and provided some answers.
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