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Andretti Warns F1 Don't Overdo U S Expansion

Andretti Warns F1: Don’t Overdo U.S. Expansion

15/04/2024

Mario Andretti expresses concerns over F1’s American strategy, emphasizing the risk of diminishing returns despite three successful races.

Mario Andretti is concerned that Formula 1 is overextending itself to appeal to the American audience. The 1978 World Champion, father of Michael Andretti whose proposal was rejected by the FOM and other teams, believes that having three successful races in the United States is already an achievement that Liberty Media should be content with.

“Personally, I think we need to be careful not to overstay our welcome. I believe there should be something that we truly look forward to. Sometimes, if you have too much of a good thing, you don’t appreciate it as much. That’s my opinion,” Andretti told Sports Illustrated.

“Three Formula 1 races, whereas 75 years ago, we hoped to have at least two. We have three today, and they are very popular. We’ve seen this with the attendance, etc. Let’s try not to overdo it. The season should allow for moving from one continent to another.”

“I think we need to be realistic somewhere. It’s one thing to want to grow, but at some point, we need to make sure not to overdo it. I think we have to be very careful not to overdo certain things because of logistics. Not just for the drivers.”

“Back in the day, taking the Concorde, I could cross continents in 3 hours and 20 minutes. Today, travels are a bit different, but it’s really about the logistics needed to move the teams.”

“That’s where the issue lies. The drivers can get there. It’s not the drivers that are the problem. In fact, as a driver, I thought the more races, the better. I never said we should have fewer races.”

“It’s the teams that are important, and the life of the team members, the mechanics, everyone who needs to be there, not just on the race weekend, but throughout the preparation and everything else. That’s the logic we need to pay attention to.”

A “spectacular” Las Vegas GP

Mario Andretti, who raced in the two Las Vegas races at the Caesars Palace parking lot in 1981 and 1982, praises the return of F1 to the gambling capital and its execution: “There’s no comparison with the Caesars Palace race.”

“It was due to the preparation and the efforts put into the infrastructure and so on. What was done in Las Vegas was purely spectacular, so there is no comparison. It’s impressive to have three totally different and distant sites, but that doesn’t matter.

“They generate the interest we hoped for, as all three sites have seen extraordinary attendance, so we must continue to cultivate this attendance. They have been presented correctly, beautifully, and the probably most challenging one was Las Vegas, because you are stepping into the center of the city, as popular as it is.”

“It turned out to be simply spectacular, and watching it, I was honestly mesmerized. So, we must continue to cultivate that side of it. It’s a good place. I think Formula 1 is experiencing one of the greatest moments in its history in terms of popularity in the United States.”

Andretti Warns F1: Don't Overdo U.S. Expansion

Andretti Warns F1: Don’t Overdo U.S. Expansion Andretti Warns F1: Don’t Overdo U.S. Expansion. Andretti Warns F1: Don’t Overdo U.S. Expansion

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