Domenicali says Michael Andretti “not smart” to call teams “greedy”

Spread the love

By Connor Bacon

F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has said Michael Andretti’s remarks towards the teams being “greedy” to protect themselves is “not smart.”

Andretti announced that they would be partnering up with General Motors for an entry bid last month, which was met with a ‘lukewarm’ reaction from F1 and the teams who do not want the commercial rights income to be diluted.

Since then, the FIA has officially opened the process to allow submissions for potential entrants, with reports suggesting that other outfits are looking at a bid but have done so in a much quieter way.

Domenicali told Sky Sports F1’s Martin Brundle that despite the cold reception towards Andretti and General Motors plans, they are welcoming to anyone who adds value to the racing. However, he reiterated the process needs to be respected.

“First of all, we are very welcoming of everyone that is bringing value to the racing,” said the Italian.

“I know them very, very well of course – Michael and Mario for many years – that is not a problem of not welcoming, that has been a wrong wording.

“I think we need to respect everyone. There are teams like Mario Andretti and Michael Andretti being very vocal about their will to enter Formula 1 – in my view it is not smart to say that teams are greedy.

“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.

“If all the elements are there, they will be very welcome.

“There are a lot of dimensions to consider, and we don’t have to overreact because someone is pushing the system.”

Domenicali also noted the importance of protecting the growth of the sport and the teams, who invested when the financial situation was not as positive.

“We need to take action because 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 that were different.

“So, the value of that investment today from a pure commercial point of view is much more different than it was just a couple of years ago.

“The process will be done seriously in the right way, and nobody can say that they will be (pressured) into the right decision because someone is shouting, and someone is shouting less.”

When questioned about whether Andretti’s public ploy at an entry has annoyed him, Domenicali said he discussed that with them openly and admitted he would have acted “in a different way.”

He added: “We need to be prudent. It seems there is a negative attack on Andretti and that is not the case. We need to be serious and professional in evaluating all the elements.

“Now more and more if you are able to join Formula 1 you need to be really strong in terms of a sustainable plan for the future.

“What has been the problem of the past years is we had so many teams coming in and out, and we need to make sure we protect that for the future for the best of the sport.”