Former Andretti driver Ryan Hunter-Reay has admitted that he's struggling to understand why the team's Formula 1 bid was rejected.
The famous Andretti name was denied entry into Formula 1 for the 2025 and 2026 seasons last week, despite having passed the FIA’s initial approval processes.
They were rejected due to the commercial merits of their application by F1, with Formula One Management claiming that "the presence of an 11th team would not, on its own, provide value to the Championship".
Ryan Hunter-Reay, who won an IndyCar championship with Andretti in 2012, took issue with the result of their application.
“It just doesn’t make sense,” he told Motorsport Week. “Obviously Andretti has the funding, the capabilities of going in there, and I think being competitive.
“Look at the past. I think Marshall Pruett said it yesterday afternoon or whatever it was, that you enjoyed watching some of these underdog teams come in and try and fight against the powerhouses of McLaren, Ferrari, Mercedes.
“It kind of leaves a bad taste in your mouth. It makes you feel like this isn’t the real deal, this isn’t what racing is all about.”
Andretti’s next hopes peg on a 2028 entry, alongside a successful engine deal with Cadillac, which may then convince F1 of the value they are bringing to the table.
With an operation of 120 people at work, the team will be determined to prove Formula One Management and those within the sport wrong sooner rather than later.
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