Red Bull’s Marko tells Andretti to ‘buy Alpine’

Dr Helmut Marko thinks he has the ideal solution for Formula 1’s Andretti-Cadillac dilemma.

On the one hand, an American team with the involvement of a new car manufacturer appears to be ideal for Formula 1 at present.

But on the other hand, while the FIA appears to want to give Andretti-Cadillac the green light, Liberty Media and several existing teams are opposed to the idea for mainly financial reasons.

Red Bull’s Marko told Sport1 that he sees the solution.

“Andretti should buy the Alpine team,” he told Sport1, amid the management chaos that is currently unfolding at the Renault-owned outfit.

“That would be best for everyone. Formula 1 would keep its 10 teams, Andretti could finally get in and Renault can still be involved.”

However, Michael Andretti said recently that he has actually approached all of the existing teams – and none of them want to sell.

Even amid the unfolding management crisis at the Enstone and Viry-based team, Renault’s group CEO Luca de Meo appears determined to stay the course in F1.

“Alpine will become the French Ferrari of F1,” he told Italian reporters in Locorotondo.

De Meo admits, however, that France’s passion for Formula 1 is dwarfed by a country like Italy.

“The reason is that the French do not have a symbol to cheer on like Ferrari is for Italy,” he said. “Our goal with Alpine is to link our colours to that passion.

“It’s a bit like when we re-proposed the Fiat 500,” added de Meo, referring to his time with the Italian car giant. “It was a hook to tie people to their own history.

“Because the people must be involved,” de Meo added.

But at present, management turmoil isn’t Alpine’s only problem in Formula 1. Another is that, even with Red Bull’s initial backing, Renault has failed in its efforts so far to be allowed to catch up with the sport’s other engines amid the development freeze.

“We weren’t against it in the Renault case,” Marko said.

“But it must be clearly demonstrated that the performance gap is significant. And it must be ensured that the measures taken do not weaken the rest of us.

“That’s why the application has been put on hold at the moment,” said the Austrian.

However, Marko says he still has sympathy for Renault’s situation.

“I can understand their problems,” he said. “Because it’s not just about engine performance.

“If you are too far behind in performance, you will have to make compromises with the car setup to compensate for the lack of speed on the straights. And that comes at the expense of the driving characteristics of the car.”

Share this article
Read next