The bid by Cadillac Racing to enter Formula One via a partnership with Andretti Global has been rejected, but an entry in a few years’ time might still be in the cards.
In January 2022, Andretti and Cadillac parent, General Motors, announced a partnership that would focus on entering the FIA Formula One (F1) World Championship. The newfound partnership was looking to take to the grid as early as 2025, running a Renault Alpine engine. In October 2023, the FIA – the sanctioning body of F1 – formally approved Andretti Cadillac for competition, allowing it to move forward for consideration from F1. While Andretti Cadillac was looking to the Renault engine as a short term solution, General Motors announced in November 2023 that it formally registered to become a power unit manufacturer in the series moving forward. Now, F1 has rejected Andretti Cadillac from entering the series at the present time, but the journey has just begun for Cadillac Racing.
The reason that the FIA would approve Andretti Cadillac’s bid while F1 would reject it revolves around the purpose of each entity. While FIA focuses on a team’s ability to remain competitive on the racetrack, F1 handles the financial side of the equation. As it stands, F1 divides revenue equally between the participating teams, which means that the addition of Andretti Cadillac would need to divide constructors’ championship prize money amongst 11 teams, instead of the current ten, something that has already seen opposition from existing teams. This additional split is accounted for in F1’s commercial assessment, which calls for new teams to provide more resources than it takes.
“While the Andretti name carries some recognition for F1 fans, our research indicates that F1 would bring more value to the Andretti brand than the other way around,” reads a statement from F1. “The addition of an 11th team would place an operational burden on the race promoters, would subject some of them to significant costs, and would reduce the technical, operational and commercial value of the Championship.”
Luckily, not all is lost for Andretti Cadillac Racing. With General Motors and Cadillac on board to develop a new power unit, F1 is open to reconsidering the bid for the 2028 season. New F1 engine rules, set to go into effect in 2026, will require 50 percent of overall power output to be derived from electrical energy, and Cadillac Racing has already begun development of the necessary technologies.
“We would look differently on an application for the entry of a team into the 2028 Championship with a GM power unit, either as a GM works team or as a GM customer team designing all allowable components in-house,” a statement from F1 reads. “In this case there would be additional factors to consider in respect of the value that the Applicant would bring to the Championship, in particular in respect of bringing a prestigious new OEM to the sport as a power unit supplier.”
Ultimately, F1 fans are split on the current decision, but GM is looking forward to ultimately joining the fray.
“We are thrilled that our new Andretti Cadillac F1 entry will be powered by a [General Motors] power unit,” GM President Mark Reuss was quoted as saying. “With our deep engineering and racing expertise, we’re confident we’ll develop a successful power unit for the series, and position Andretti Cadillac as a true works team. We will run with the very best, at the highest levels, with passion and integrity that will help elevate the sport for race fans around the world.”
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