Ken Anderson and Peter Windsor, the principals behind the team they call USF1, officially announced their intent Tuesday to run the 2010 schedule. The motorsports veterans said they'll base the team in Charlotte, home for most NASCAR teams, and scour the market for young American drivers.
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"Who they are ... your guess is as good as mine," said Windsor, a former team manager for Ferrari and Williams and current F1 pit reporter for Speed TV. "But two American drivers, that's what we intend to do."
Windsor rattled off a list of relatively unknown open-wheel drivers currently competing in lower ranks, the most notable Jonathan Summerton, a 21-year-old Florida native racing in Europe in the A1GP Series.
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Then he and Anderson turned to their dream list, which included former F1 driver Scott Speed, NASCAR star Kyle Busch and IndyCar glamour girl Danica Patrick. But Speed has said he has no interest in leaving NASCAR for an F1 return. Busch and Patrick both are willing to discuss the opportunity, but neither has been contacted by USF1 representatives.
Neither principal mentioned Marco Andretti, the budding IndyCar star and grandson of 1978 F1 world champion Mario Andretti.
Mario Andretti called into the news conference, which was televised live on Speed TV, as an invited guest in support of the USF1 team. During his comments, he recommended his 22-year-old grandson for a future F1 ride.
"Every time I mention Formula One, he says 'I'd give anything to have this opportunity,'" Andretti said. "If I were to design a Formula One driver today, I would design Marco. We'll see what the future brings for him."
Marco Andretti signed a contract extension last year with Andretti Green Racing, the team co-owned by his father, Michael.
After Andretti hung up, Windsor added Marco Andretti to the list of potential hires, as well as Graham Rahal, a 20-year-old IndyCar driver.
Both were testing Tuesday at Homestead-Miami Speedway and said they had not been contacted by anyone from the new F1 team.
"I've got to focus on the task at hand," the younger Andretti said. "I mean, obviously, Formula One is my ultimate goal. But I'm not sure that's the way to go, on a first-year team. But, having said that, I'm definitely willing to do whatever it takes to get over there."
First, though, Andretti has another goal.