Why Andretti’s Sauber F1 deal collapsed at 11th hour

Michael Andretti has blamed his failed attempt to enter Formula 1 with a takeover of Sauber-owned Alfa Romeo on “control issues”. 
Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Alfa Romeo Racing C41.
Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Alfa Romeo Racing C41.
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Andretti Autosport had been linked with buying a majority stake in the Sauber-run Alfa Romeo F1 team amid weeks of speculation leading into the United States Grand Prix weekend. 

A deal appeared to be a formality but it ultimately failed to materialise, with reports claiming that talks between the parties had broken down after hitting a snag. 

But Andretti denied rumours the deal collapsed because of a financial roadblock, and instead explained it was about control of the team. 

"I'd just like to put an end to some of these rumours that the deal fell through because of financial reasons,” Andretti said. “That couldn't be further from the truth. 

“It had nothing to do with that. It basically came down to control issues in the final hours of the negotiations. That's what killed the deal.

“Unfortunately at the 11th hour, control issues changed, and it was a deal that we had to step away from because we couldn’t accept it. I always said that we’re only going to do it if it’s right for us, and in the end it wasn’t right for us.

“I think it would have been a huge story. It’s a shame it didn’t work out. But I don’t give up.”

IndyCar star Colton Herta had been linked with a seat at Alfa Romeo for 2022, with Antonio Giovinazzi expected to lose his drive at the end of the 2021 campaign. 

Andretti revealed that the American would have been his first choice to partner new Alfa Romeo signing Valtteri Bottas next season had a deal got over the line. 

“Obviously if we do ever get a team, he would lead the way for us in terms of wanting to bring an American driver,” Andretti explained. 

“He’d be the perfect guy to do it. We were definitely were going to try to get him into the seat because I believe he could be a competitive driver in Europe. I really do. There’s no reason why he wouldn’t.”

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