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Hugo Boss set to end F1 involvement, move into Formula E

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German fashion designer Hugo Boss is set to end its involvement in Formula 1 after more than 35 years in favor of a move into Formula E, according to CEO Mark Langer.

Hugo Boss first signed a team partnership with McLaren in 1981, and worked with the British team right the way up until 2015 when it moved across to Mercedes.

Mercedes enjoys sponsorship from Hugo Boss, with the German company also producing its teamwear and kit, but the partnership looks set to end next year.

In an interview with German magazine Focus, Langer confirmed Hugo Boss would be making the switch across to Formula E in the near future, believing it to be more pertinent to a younger audience.

“Of course Formula 1 is the top class of motor racing, but Formula E is more innovative and sustainable,” Langer said.

“The engines, the races in major cities – that is something a younger audience likes, which offers new opportunities.

“After many years in Formula 1, really since Jochen Mass in the 1970s, we have been thinking ‘what is the next thing?’”

Formula E currently boasts involvement from a number of major car manufacturers including Renault, Audi, BMW and Jaguar, with the likes of Nissan, Porsche and Mercedes all due to join in the next two years.

Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport

Photo: IndyCar
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A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.

Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.

That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.

However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.

“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”

Ryan Hunter-Reay during testing at ISM Raceway. Photo: IndyCar

Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”

Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.

“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”

Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

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