US House Judiciary chief launches probe into F1’s Andretti rejection

An investigation has been launched into F1's rejection of Andretti's application to join the grid in 2026.

Michael Andretti (USA) Andretti Global Chairman and CEO. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 6, Miami Grand Prix, Miami,
Michael Andretti (USA) Andretti Global Chairman and CEO. Formula 1 World…

The chairman of the United States’ House Judiciary Committee has launched a probe into F1’s decision to deny Andretti a spot on the grid.

American television and radio network NBC News has published a letter from Republican Jim Jordan, who has demanded answers for the blocking of Andretti’s bid.

The letter has been sent to Liberty CEO Greg Maffei and F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.

“The Committee on the Judiciary is responsible for examining the sufficiency of federal competition laws to protect against monopolies and other unfair restraints on trade,” he wrote.

“Sports leagues, like Formula 1, operate in a notable area of antitrust law in which some degree of collusion is necessary for the creation of the product.

“However, when a sports league deviates from its rules and practices in a manner that reduces competition and depresses consumer interest in the product, the collusion may amount to anti-competitive conduct.”

Jordan made it clear he does not buy some of the explanations that F1 outlined for denying Andretti’s bid for 2026, a decision which was announced in late January.

“The excuses put forward for denying Andretti Cadillac’s entry appear to be pretextual, arbitrary, and unrelated to Andretti Cadillac’s suitability to compete in Formula 1.

“For example, Formula 1 alleged that a new team could only add value to Formula 1 by 'competing for podiums and race wins.’

"However, the FIA had already analysed—and approved of—the technical capabilities of Andretti Cadilac to compete among current teams, and most current teams in Formula 1 do not meet Formula 1’s standard of regularly competing for 'podiums and race wins’.

“Formula 1 also faulted Andretti Cadillac for attempting to use an existing engine manufacturer because it could 'be damaging to the prestige and standing of' Formula 1. At the same time, however, Formula 1 stated that if Andretti Cadillac used a new engine manufactured by General Motors in the team’s first year, a new engine would create a challenge for the new team.

“Formula 1 cannot have it both ways. The truth, as FIA President Muhamed Ben Sulayem explained, is that the rejection of Andretti Cadillac is 'all about money.’"

(L to R): Mario Andretti (USA) with Adrian Newey (GBR) Red Bull Racing Chief Technical Officer on the grid. Formula 1
(L to R): Mario Andretti (USA) with Adrian Newey (GBR) Red Bull Racing…

Speaking to RACER at the Miami Grand Prix, Michael Andretti insisted the operation remains optimistic about their F1 plans following a meeting with FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem.

“There’s a lot of building going on there, there’s a lot of building going on at General Motors, and also a lot of building in our Fishers headquarters, so there’s a lot of work happening,” Andretti said.

“It’s a risk, for sure, but I think it shows how much we believe in this. We believe it’s great for Formula 1, we think it would be great for American fans, and to bring a company like General Motors into Formula 1 I think is huge. We believe in it that much that we’re willing to roll the dice.”

Speaking on the grid in Miami, 1978 world champion Mario Andretti told Sky Sports F1's Martin Brundle: "We're working every day. 

"We're ready to meet whatever challenge there is, just tell us what and we're in. We're preparing in every possible way and our intention is to be on the grid in 2026." 

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