Mario Andretti questioned Formula One and the FIA on their eleventh-team proposal. He said he is unsure of what further his team can do to be admitted into the competition. Recently, the American team teamed up with General Motors, drawing harsh criticism from rival teams.
As the 1978 world champion and team are denied admittance into the sport in 2026, the Andretti drama continues. The team and American behemoth General Motors formed a partnership to enter the single-seater racing category together at the beginning of the new year.
Mario Andretti is opposed by the FIA and the sport. But he and his crew are confident that they have complied with all of its requirements. Mario Andretti is unclear about what further he must do to qualify for Formula One.
The F1 hopeful told the German publication AMuS: “The FIA has already asked us several very detailed questions, and we were able to answer every single one of them to our entire satisfaction. Everything required for an explanation is on file with the [FIA] President in writing. When it wasn’t sufficient, dedication mandated that we find a manufacturer. We shipped it. What else ought to we send?”
The first time FIA disregarded the name of Mario Andretti
Although Mario Andretti has received some criticism from other teams over his team’s probable future in the sport. Mario Andretti still aspires to join F1. But this isn’t the first time the Andretti name has been disregarded in the sport.
At the Canadian GP in 1986, the American driver may have made his professional racing debut. Patrick Tambay’s severe collision during the warm-up practice necessitated a replacement for the American Haas team (unrelated to the one on the grid today).
Michael Andretti, the son of Mario Andretti, who had won the Formula Super Vee and Formula Mondial championships, was the ideal candidate for the job.
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The driver could easily succeed Tambay in Canada at the time since he was competing in the highly regarded CART series.
Mario Andretti was not granted a super license, which is required to compete in the sport, by F1’s previous regulatory body, the FISA. While the FIA now uses a points-based system to determine who gets a super license, things were far less formal in the past.
As a result, Allen Berg, a less skilled Canadian driver, took Tambay’s spot that weekend, breaking Mario Andretti‘s son’s heart.
Michael Andretti had to wait a further seven years before making his McLaren debut. By that point, the driver had won several further CART races and even managed to claim the championship in 1991. Whether the Andretti name will be associated with the sport in 2026 is still up in the air.