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Andretti begin vehicle testing for hopeful F1 entry

The American outfit are gunning for a possible 2025 debut in Formula 1

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Andretti Autosport will commence aerodynamic testing next week, continuing their preparations to become the 11th Formula 1 team.

Toyota windtunnel
The Cologne wind tunnel facility was used by McLaren for aerodynamic testing until August this year (Image Credit: Toyota Racing)

The United States Grand Prix is in full swing, and one of the most high profile visitors to the iconic Circuit of the Americas is former F1 driver and owner of Andretti Autosport, Michael Andretti.

Based in Indianapolis, Andretti Autosport recently had their bid to join the F1 grid approved by the FIA. While still pending the final approval from the Formula One Management (FOM), the nascent team have wasted no time in preparing for a competitive debut campaign, whenever that may be.

Andretti have been concocting for a 2025 entry for several months now, hiring key personnel including ex-Renault technical chief Nick Chester and a likely engine supply deal with the existing Alpine team.

Speaking to Sky Sports F1, Michael revealed that car testing will start next week at Toyota’s Cologne facility in Germany. It’s wind tunnel was last used by McLaren as recently as August this year, before the Woking-based outfit moved to its own wind tunnel at its headquarters.

He said: “Our car is actually going to be in the wind tunnel next week, so we have a car already built up in 2023 spec.”

“We are flat out and we are building a team, so at the moment it is ’25 but could be ’26, we’ll see.”

Michael: A mystery why the other teams are pushing back

While the FIA has approved Andretti Autosport’s entry into F1, the FOM still have the final say whether a team will be allowed in the sport or not. FOM represent the 10 existing teams, and it’s safe to say the general reaction has been somewhat sour from them.

The main point of contention stems from a splitting of the Championship revenue, which would see each team receive less funding overall. But Michael believes that Andretti Autosport will bring more value financially than they may initially take away.

He added: “They say we are slicing the pie but I think the point is we hopefully bring in more than what we take away and we really believe that. We think we are going to add to it and not take away from it.”

“I think there is plenty to go around and, if can help improve the popularity of the US from where it is today, then I think there are a lot of companies that are not in the series right now that have already contacted us and are interested in it. Once we get the approval then they want to talk to us, so I disagree with that.”

Feature Image Credit: @chrisowens on Instagram

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