Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

Five US companies I'd like to see participate in F1 - F1 returns to the US this year, but who could make great sponsors?

Published by Jonathan Crummett

For whatever reason I have made the unconscious decision to be a fan of sports that America isn't so hot at. First there is soccer (football), where, at the World Cup, getting out of the group play is considered a major feat. Then there is hockey, which we aren’t bad at, but are always underdogs to Canada and Russia. And now, Formula 1. There hasn't been an American driver since I've been following and the most recent chance for an American team never got further than constructing a nose from what I can tell.

As an American, though, I can dream. Or ponder up a list of companies that I think it would be entertaining to see try to compete in Formula 1.


I don't know of any higher tech car out there and they truly are works of art

With constructers such as Ferrari, McLaren, and Lotus, Formula 1 can easily be described as luxurious. Celebrities at the races and GPs on the streets of locations such as Monaco and Singapore add to Formula 1's splendor. The name most synonymous with luxury in American autos is Cadillac. Cadillac describes its current design philosophy as "art and science." What better stage is there for this automaker to test and showcase this philosophy? I don't know of any higher tech car out there and they truly are works of art. (Though, this year's models look more like Picasso paintings with those noses.)

Luxury alone doesn't get Cadillac on this list. Like Ferrari and McLaren, Cadillac has history. The company, founded by engineer Henry Leland, is named for French explorer Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, founder of Detroit. Furthermore, Cadillac introduced the first mass produced automobile V8 in 1914. Perhaps they could reach back and draw upon some of that innovation and leadership and have some success in F1.

Tesla Motors

Back before Valentine's Day, Joe Saward wrote an article about F1 moving to hybrid engines in 2014. This made me wonder if Tesla Motors, manufacturers of the Tesla Roadster electric sports car, might not make a bigger name for themselves by competing in F1. They would have to take a step in the opposite direction with the hybrid engines and embrace combustion to an extent, but perhaps a company that specializes in all electric vehicles might have some sort of edge in that department. Tesla also partnered with Group Lotus when making the Roadster so Tesla would have a potential big brother in the sport.


If Red Bull can get into all sorts of racing, then why can't Nike? They have got to be big enough to afford it. However, since Nike predominantly makes apparel and equipment, someone will have to convince them that the car is just part of the uniform. As for livery, I’d hope they would take inspiration from the 2011 Oregon Ducks Rose Bowl uniforms!

Penske Racing

Maybe Penske will make the jump back into the sport and give us a home side to cheer for

Of all the companies on this list, Penske Racing arguably has the best chance of making it in Formula 1. Penske had some experience in F1, making their debut in 1974. The team's F1 results peaked with just a single win, whereas their current NASCAR and IndyCar results are much better.

If the GPs in Austin and New Jersey turn out to be successful maybe Penske will make the jump back into the sport and give us a home side to cheer for.

They could even bring Australian driver Will Power along too!


How often is Formula 1 colorfully described as low flying jets or rockets on the ground? Well, Boeing could make that metaphor come amazingly true. If anyone knows aerodynamics, it has got to be the folks at Boeing. If anyone could find a work around the hideous noses on this year's cars, it has got to be Boeing! Well, them and McLaren. Seriously though, I would be highly interested in seeing what kind of lines a car designed by the company that makes commercial carriers, jet airplanes, and space rockets would unveil.

Now don’t get me wrong, I don't expect any of these companies to really get into Formula 1. It is just a fun topic to muse about - and I like making top five lists. If another company from the US tries to get further into the sport than the last one that attempted it, I'm sure that it will be some group that no one has ever heard of. Although, my Penske idea is starting to grow on me, and seeing a Boeing "Delta Series" car design would be awesome! Until then, I'll continue to cheer for the rocket red of McLaren.