Cover Image for Mario Andretti claims 1/3 owner of Mercedes is too powerful for F1

Mario Andretti claims 1/3 owner of Mercedes is too powerful for F1

Tanish Chachra
|Thu Aug 11 2022

Mario Andretti, the former world champion and father of Michael Andretti, claims Toto Wolff is too powerful for Formula 1.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is surely an influencing figure in Formula 1. He reportedly owns one-third of the reigning world champions and has amassed over half a billion net worth.

In the meantime, he strongly opposes the inclusion of Andretti Autosport in F1. Michael Andretti, the owner of an American racing team, has been eyeing landing another American representation in F1 for over a couple of years.

However, the majority of teams are opposing his inclusion because of several financial reasons. But, Wolff spearheading the opposition signals his ability to lobby things in his favour.

Retweeting an article by Grand Prix 247, Mario Andretti, the former world champion, wrote: “This needed to be said; it’s about time.”

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Toto Wolff explains why he opposes

Wolff is one of the sharpest minds when it comes to money matters. Therefore, his opposition to Andretti is purely financial and not with fear of increased competition.

“We need to understand what it is you can provide to the sport,” said Wolff. “And if an OEM or multi-national group joins Formula 1 and can demonstrate they are going to spend X amount of dollars in activating, in marketing and in various markets, that is obviously a totally different value proposition for all the other teams.

“We have 10 franchises that we hope can increase the value and you are certainly not going to increase the value by issuing new franchises to people who cannot increase the overall value of Formula 1.”

Andretti tried to buy Haas

The American motorsport giant has reportedly tried to get into F1 through other ways. He earlier tried to buy Haas, the team owned by American businessman Gene Haas.

However, the rising profits of the current F1 teams have made it hard for other teams to take over the old regimes. Thus, that plan has so far failed.

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