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Formula One announced Jan. 31 it has rejected Andretti Global’s bid to enter the sport in either 2025 or 2026.  FIA approved the American team’s expansion of the grid last year, but the final decision fell onto F1, which argued it did “not believe that the applicant would be a competitive participant.”

The decision is partly due to the rule changes coming in 2026, F1 explained in its ruling. Additionally, the team would have to use another manufacturer’s engine prior to General Motor’s completion of a competition-ready engine in 2028. F1 argued Andretti, a “novice entrant,” would subsequently have to construct different cars in its first two years of competition.

“The fact that the Applicant proposes to do so gives us reason to question their understanding of the scope of the challenges involved,” its statement said.

However, F1 noted it “would look differently on an application” of a GM power unit entry, either a factory or customer team, for the 2028 season. GM registered with the FIA last year to become an engine supplier beginning in 2028.

Additionally, F1 argued the “presence of an 11th team would not…provide value to the Championship.”

“While the Andretti name carries some recognition for F1 fans, our research indicates that F1 would bring value to the Andretti brand rather than the other way around,” Formula One’s statement said.

The decision follows grumbling from existing F1 teams regarding the potential entry and expanding the field to 11 teams. The most vocal criticism has been Andretti’s inclusion on the grid would dilute the financial and resources pool of the sport, including payouts to teams.   

The track with competing cars during Formula One Grand Prix of the Netherlands at Circuit Zandvoort, Netherlands
Formula One Grand Prix of the Netherlands at Circuit Zandvoort | Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Still, some F1 team bosses shared their support, at least in its ideation, including McLaren Racing boss Zak Brown. Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal, said GM and Cadillac would be “phenomenal brands to have in the sport,” but sympathized with the financial aspects of the team’s entrance into F1.

The decision comes on the heels of Andretti recently announcing it has hired talent for the team’s hopeful bid into the sport in 2025. Hires reportedly include experienced F1 professionals from Red Bull, Mercedes, Ferrari, McLaren, Williams, Renault and the former Manor organization. The Andretti team reportedly includes 120 employees.

The team was also reportedly aero testing a scale model of its F1 car.

For now, however, those moves seem to be a moot point.

Additional sources: [Racer], [Sports Illustrated], [The Athletic]