Guenther Steiner, the manager of the Haas F1 team, believes that Michael Andretti’s critique of the “snobbish attitudes” within the “European Club” of Formula 1 is “not productive.”
Following the failure of his attempt to obtain the Sauber-owned Alfa Romeo team last year, Andretti declared his ambition to compete in Formula One in 2024.
There has been no public sign that his team is close to receiving an invitation to the championship despite the fact that it submitted paperwork under its new Andretti Global moniker.
Some teams have expressed opposition since, due to F1’s franchise arrangement, they would have to forfeit a portion of the prize money if Andretti joined.
Any additional 11th team would preferably be a manufacturer project, like the factory teams for Audi or Honda.
Andretti expressed his anger at the “snobbish” attitudes within F1, which he described to GQ magazine as a “European Club,” as a result of this apathy.
When The Race informed Haas’s Steiner of Andretti’s remarks at the Austrian Grand Prix, Steiner was perplexed.
Steiner added, “I don’t know what he’s trying to accomplish with these comments, but that’s up to Michael.
You know, whether or not we provide him a license is not really up to us.
We have an opinion, but I don’t believe we can make a decision on it.
“So, we don’t know what he presented, or I don’t know why – I shouldn’t speak for others – I don’t know what he presented to FIA and FOM so I have no idea,” said the speaker.
Obviously, these statements aren’t helpful or forward-thinking in my perspective, but you live with the consequences of your decisions.
The UK-based Haas team, which is controlled by Americans, works similarly to how Andretti would if it were admitted to Formula 1.
Andretti admitted earlier this year that he has made “millions” of bids to purchase the Haas F1 team, but Gene Haas has shown no interest.
The Ferrari team manager Mattia Binotto said he “cannot comment since I never had a chat” with Michael Andretti while speaking alongside Steiner in the press conference.
His Mercedes counterpart number Toto Wolff claims to have spoken to Michael’s father Mario, who won the 1978 F1 title, “twice on the phone and that was extremely lovely.”
At the Miami Grand Prix in May, Michael Andretti made an effort to win the support of the F1 teams in the paddock.
However, only McLaren and Alpine have so far made their support for Andretti’s scheme public, and both teams have some financial stake in it.
If Andretti entered Formula One, Alpine would most certainly supply the engines, while McLaren’s chief Zak Brown has partnered with Andretti in Extreme E and Supercars.
Andretti is seeking to capitalize on the growth of Formula One in the United States, and the team’s owner was keen to point out that there is still a lot of untapped potential in the sport.
He claimed that viewers who are “a touch fickle” are produced by successes like Netflix’s Drive to Survive, and an Andretti F1 entry might be the hook that keeps them interested in the championship.
What are your thoughts on this tale?