[Horner: F1 teams waiting for Liberty proposal on Andretti entry
Andretti’s plans took a step closer to becoming a reality when the team was approved by the FIA, and it now falls to the F1 organisation and its owner Liberty to assess the commercial position of the potential new entrant.
Existing team bosses have continued to express their opposition to a new team coming in, in essence, because of the future requirement to divide the prize fund 11 ways instead of 10.
Horner also suggested that Andretti should follow Audi’s example by buying an existing team and that its partner Cadillac should come in with its own engine instead of lending its name to an outfit that intends to utilise Renault customer power units.
“I see this very much as an issue between FIA and Liberty,” Horner told Sky Sports F1. “FIA are the regulator, Liberty are the promoter, and therefore they control the funding of the sport.
“Of course, another team coming in, how is that going to be funded? I think those guys need to get together and come to us with a proposal of what they want.
“I think that to have GM coming in particular into F1 is a massively positive thing. We’re seeing Ford coming back in ’26, Ford versus GM would be fantastic.
“I think they need to do their own engine, and I think that when you look at how Audi has come into the sport, they’ve acquired an existing team and an existing franchise, should it be different for the others?
“I think that’s where Liberty and the FIA need to get together and come to us with a collective position. Because you can’t have one rule for one, and another for others.”
Michael Andretti on the grid
Photo by: Alexander Trienitz / Motorsport Images
Asked if the engine issue was key, Horner admitted the share of the prize fund being split into small chunks was the most pressing issue.
“Obviously, money makes the world go round,” he said. “That’s what every team will be acutely sensitive of, and the franchise value being diluted. Suddenly you go from 10 to 11. So, of course, the stakeholders, the shareholders of each individual team will have a concern about that.”
He added: “About six years ago, there were four teams on the brink of leaving. I think the sport has turned itself around, it’s reinvented itself, and it’s in great shape and huge strength now. And of course, those 10 teams are effectively now franchises. And they have a value.
“Their shareholders will be looking to protect their value in that investment. They’ve invested across the team billions and billions of dollars or pounds.
“I think the teams will be looking to see, okay, what does this landscape look like, both commercially and operationally?”
Horner also suggested that some venues couldn’t cope with an extra team.
“Let’s face it, where would we put them in Zandvoort, for example?” Horner added. “So I think there’s some operational issues to overcome as well.
“I think that’s for Liberty and the FIA to get together, come to us with a proposal and then we can all consider it.”