Andretti Global reveals plans for 575,000-square-foot headquarters in Indiana

Andretti Global headquarters
Andretti Global
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Pressing ahead on hopes to field a Formula One team, Andretti Global unveiled plans this week to build its future headquarters in suburban Indianapolis.

The $200-million, 575,000-square-foot shop (pictured in the rendering above) on 90 acres in Fishers, Indiana, would house Michael Andretti’s IndyCar, Indy Lights, IMSA teams as well as “other future racing initiatives.”

Andretti has been trying to land a stake in F1 since last year, first by buying an existing team and since by lobbying to be added to the 20-car grid by the 2024 season. Mario Andretti told the Indianapolis Star last week that the team remains committed to the F1 project.

Michael Andretti said in February that the Indianapolis area would be the home of the proposed F1 operations under the same roof with all of his teams. The F1 engineering staff would be housed in England.

In a Monday release, Andretti Global estimated the new headquarters in Indiana would add up to 500 jobs by early 2026 and would be part of a planned indoor amphitheater, museum and innovation center “that will preserve and showcase the Andretti legacy and inspire the future of motorsports.”

The team said in a release that construction was expected to begin in the fall for an opening in 2025. The Indiana Economic Development Corporation board of directors is slated to approve an investment of up to $19 million in conditional tax credits and $125,000 in training grants.

Andretti has racing interests around the globe across eight motorsports series

“Indiana holds an important place in the history of racing, and in my career as a driver and an owner,” Michael Andretti said in a relase. “I’m happy to confirm that the Racing Capital of the World will continue to be the home of our global racing efforts for a long time to come. We’re excited about our plans for the new campus and looking forward to becoming a part of the Fishers community.

“Over the past 20 years, I’ve worked to expand our operations and I’m proud of our steps to create a diverse racing portfolio. Our current facility has served us well. Our team has expanded in both competition and commercial areas and our people deserve the best environment and resources available. I’m excited to have so many of our teams under one roof as we continue to build and grow. For us, it’s about more than just having somewhere to work on the cars; it’s about having a global motorsport home and sharing that with our people, our fans and our sponsors to advance the sport and leave a lasting legacy.”

Said Indiana Gov. Eric J. Holcomb: “Indiana has long been the racing capital of the world, and Andretti Autosport’s commitment to growth here will only further cement our state’s leadership position in Motorsports and STEM-related pursuits.

“This new campus will not only bring new, exciting employment opportunities and serve as an asset for one of our fastest-growing communities but will also show just how much this living legacy, one of the most globally iconic brands known, continues to invest in the future of our great state.”

Max Verstappen could clinch second F1 title with victory in Singapore Grand Prix

Max Verstappen F1 Singapore
LILLIAN SUWANRUMPHA/AFP via Getty Images)
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While last year’s intense Formula One title battle went to the wire and captivated the world of sport, this year’s F1 championship long has seemed a procession for Max Verstappen that could end Sunday in the Singapore Grand Prix.

If the Red Bull driver wins, and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc crumbles, Verstappen will claim his second consecutive series title.

Verstappen leads Leclerc by 116 points with six races remaining in the 2022 season and will clinch the title if he scores 22 points more than Leclerc, his most realistic head-to-head challenger.

Verstappen, who turned 25 on Friday, must win to clinch a second world title, along with two other scenarios involving Leclerc. If Verstappen wins, Leclerc can finish no higher than ninth; if Verstappen wins and earns a bonus point for fastest lap, Leclerc can finish no higher than eighth.

“It’s quite a long shot,” Verstappen said. “I need a lot of luck for it to happen here, so I don’t really count on it.”

It is more realistic that Verstappen secures the title Oct. 9 at the Japanese GP.

“I think Suzuka will be my first proper opportunity to win the title,” the Dutchman said. “So I’m looking forward to Singapore right now, but I’m also very excited for next week.”

Still, there’ll be no tension in the air Sunday night at the Marina Bay Street Circuit, as in Abu Dhabi last year when Mercedes star Lewis Hamilton lost the title on the last lap to Verstappen. Hamilton missed out on a record eighth F1 title in a controversial finish following a chaotic late restart.

That fans won’t get to see any such drama this season is much to Hamilton’s regret.

“I feel for the fans . . . Last year, going right down to the wire, that was intense for everybody and so it’s never great when the season finishes early,” Hamilton said. “For you, as the one individual (winner) it’s great, but for the actual sport, (it) is not spectacular. Let’s hope for the future that it’s a bit better.”

Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez (125 points back), Mercedes driver George Russell (132 behind) and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. (152) are mathematical title challengers only.

Red Bull is unlikely to allow Perez an opportunity to beat Verstappen, though, and would deploy him to defend its star driver. Verstappen has won 11 of 16 races, including the past five, taking his career tally to 31.

“It’s been a really special season, and I’m enjoying it a lot,” he said. “But I (will) probably enjoy it more after the season, looking back at it.”

He’s also won from seven different grid positions – a single-season F1 record – including starting from 14th at the Belgian GP last month.

“It’s even good to watch when you’re in the car,” McLaren driver Lando Norris said. “Especially when he starts (far back) and still wins quite easily.”

Hamilton hasn’t been close enough to challenge Verstappen this year after so long in the spotlight.

Two of Hamilton’s came on the last day: in 2008 with an overtake on the last corner of the final race, and in 2014 when he beat then-Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg in Abu Dhabi. Two years later, he lost the title in the last race to Rosberg.

Hamilton won the championship with three races left in 2015, and he won the 2020 title at the Turkish GP in a shortened season due to the coronavirus pandemic.

With seven titles, that put him even with fellow great Michael Schumacher, who won the 2002 championship with six races remaining. An outstanding campaign saw Schumacher place first or second in 16 of 17 races and third in Malaysia – a race won by his younger brother, Ralf.

Hamilton has a record 103 victories but none this season.

Mercedes has struggled with ground effects, where the floor generates aerodynamic grip – an issue known as porpoising or bouncing – that has been particularly difficult on street circuits like Monaco or Azerbaijan.

Singapore’s tight and sinewy 3.1-mile street course again could be challenging.

“We hope that the car works better here,” Hamilton said. “It really depends how bumpy it is, and the bumps often set the car off. Maybe the car will be fine. Maybe it won’t.”

He does think Mercedes has figured out how to maximize opportunities when they do come.

“We know where those limitations are; we just have to try and work around them,” he said. “I think we were very fortunate, we’re in a much better place I think. So I hope that we’re not far away (from a victory).”

Russell seems to have coped better, however, and leads sixth-place Hamilton by 35 points in the standings. He has seven podium finishes compared to six for Hamilton, who was fifth in the second practice after leading the opening session. The Ferraris of Sainz and Leclerc topped the second practice.

Williams driver Alex Albon returns to racing just three weeks after being hospitalized with appendicitis and then suffering subsequent respiratory failure.

Albon jumped back into the Williams FW44 for the first practice session on Friday in hot and humid evening conditions.

“It’s definitely audacious to come back for the toughest race of the season having only just recovered,” Russell said. “But it just goes to show the sort of grit and determination he has.”

Drivers lose around 5 kilos (11 pounds) in weight through dehydration during Sunday’s race.