- Lo not interested in Andretti or Hitech entries
- Billionaire wants more Asian representation in F1
- Deadline for new entries is reportedly 30th April
Hong Kong-based billionaire Calvin Lo is considering an investment into a Formula One entry bid for 2026.
Lo, who is already financially involved with Williams Racing, wants to increase Asian representation in the global motorsport series.
“The financial part, believe it or not, to me is actually not the biggest problem,” he told Reuters. “It's actually gathering all the expertise … the mechanics, the whole team together into one unit.
“So right now there are a few opportunities coming up, have come up, and we are talking quite seriously with a few teams.”
While he would not confirm which teams this applies to, he ruled out any involvement with the joint Andretti Cadillac entry or the rumoured Hitech Grand Prix outfit.
The International Automobile Federation (FIA) introduced a new application process for prospective Formula One teams at the start of this year, and Calvin Lo first revealed his interest in getting involved in December last year.
The deadline for new teams to declare interest is 30th April, although Calvin Lo has suggested to Reuters that this has been pushed back to May.
Lo said one potential team he was talking to had already applied and another was “still going on behind the scenes doing their thing. I'm just here waiting, looking at the reports, looking at the numbers, making sure everything looks fine for the long term”.
Any team would have to pay the US$200 million anti-dilution fee to join Formula One, although multiple reports indicate that the current grid is looking to increase this number to as high as US$600 million.
Lo has also expressed his dissatisfaction with the current focus on the US, with opportunities in Asia going mostly ignored. Formula One currently only visits the continent twice a year for the Japanese and Singapore Grands Prix.
“I think there are a lot more Asian players, investors, who want to get into this sport – more than we could ever imagine,” he added, mentioning car manufacturers in Japan, South Korea and China to Reuters.
“I'm fortunate enough to be able to know many of them and they’ve sounded out and expressed their interest in getting involved. So a consortium, pool resources together,” he added of those unidentified investors.
While all interested parties are certainly not known to the public, ruling out involvement with the Andretti and Hitech entry bids narrows down the pool of those that are known to have expressed interest.
Firstly, there is the Craig Pollock-led bid to introduce a team with a 50/50 gender split across the entire organisation, although this is rumoured to be funded by Saudi Arabia and, therefore, is likely to not need any foreign capital to achieve its goals.
Something that does line up with Calvin Lo's goals of increased Asian representation, however, is the rumoured interest from the Indian billionaire behind the Mumbai Falcons Racing Team. Nothing concrete is known about this bid, so it certainly correlates with Lo's statement of “behind the scenes” interest.