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sport / rec.autos.sport.nascar / Lewis Hamilton supports Andretti's bid to join F1 grid

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Lewis Hamilton supports Andretti's bid to join F1 grid

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https://www.espn.com/f1/story/_/id/38575791/lewis-hamilton-supports-andrettis-bid-join-f1-grid

Lewis Hamilton supports Andretti's bid to join F1 grid
play

Nate Saunders, General Editor, F1
Oct 5, 2023, 02:00 PM ET
F LOSAIL, Qatar -- Lewis Hamilton believes Formula One should embrace
Andretti's proposed entry to the sport as an 11th team due to the
opportunities it would create and the added excitement it would bring to
racing.

This week the sport's governing body, the FIA, formally approved
Andretti's bid to join the F1 grid in future, although the American team
still needs approval from F1's commercial rights holder Liberty Media to
actually secure a spot.

That may be tricky, with several teams opposed to the idea -- on
Thursday, Aston Martin boss Lawrence Stroll said F1 would be better off
sticking with the existing 10.

Asked about the issue ahead of the Qatar Grand Prix, Hamilton disagreed.

"I think it's great," Hamilton said. "I've always felt there wasn't
enough cars on the grid.

"While there's definitely people that won't be happy for me to be
supportive of it, I think it's great. It's an opportunity for more jobs,
it's another two seats available for a female driver to come through. It
opens up more possibilities and I think it would be more exciting for
the race."

Lewis Hamilton has welcomed the prospect of Andretti becoming the 11th
team on the F1 grid. Bryn Lennon - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images
Andretti, son of 1978 F1 champion Mario, won one CART championship as a
driver and has won four IndyCar titles and five Indy 500s as a team boss.

His F1 entry, if approved, would include a partnership with General
Motors and Cadillac.

Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso has first-hand experience with
Michael Andretti's racing operation, having contested the 2017 Indy 500
in a joint partnership with McLaren.

Alonso stopped short of supporting the bid outright and said whatever
decision F1 took would be the correct one.

"A great team," Alonso said on Thursday. "I know Michael and it would
obviously be a great name to add to Formula One but there are other
people in charge of this kind of decision. First the FIA, and then FOM
[Formula One Management] and the teams as well. For me, I don't know
exactly what to say, whatever is the final decision is going to be OK.

"I like Michael, I like the organization, but I also understand other
things and I will support as well whatever Aston Martin's position is
and I will be OK with anything."

Max Verstappen, who needs just three points from Saturday's sprint race
to be crowned champion, would also like to see a new team on the grid.

"I speak from the driver's side, but of course I'm not a team owner, so
I can understand their side," Verstappen said. "Everything I've seen so
far, plus I think the partners they have and the name, they have shown
they are a professional team.

"It would be I think nice, because I think it gives more opportunities
for the drivers' side. But I can understand from the team's side, they
don't want it. It's a tricky one, it's a tough one. And at the end of
the day, the FIA and the teams, and FOM, they have more information
about how serious everything is and how well everything is prepared.
That's why it's not going to be a very easy decision to make."

There is no timeline for a decision on Andretti's bid.

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Andretti wins FIA approval of bid to enter F1 as 11th team


sport / rec.autos.sport.nascar / Lewis Hamilton supports Andretti's bid to join F1 grid

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