breaking news


today is May 31, 2023

Another potential new entrant to the Formula 1 grid has announced its intention to join the series.

LKY SUNZ says it has secured backing from US sports fund Legends Advocates Sports Group and other Asian investors. It plans to submit an entry ahead of the FIA’s deadline for new applications, which were invited earlier this year.

The project was co-founded by Benjamin Durand, who was previously involved in another attempt to enter a team in Formula 1. His Panthera Team Asia project was announced in 2019. Its other co-founders are Andrew Pyrah, who has been named chief commercial officer, and Paul Fleming, its chairman.

LKY SUNZ – which takes its name from a combination of ‘Lucky’, which it calls a “nod to the Asian heritage of the team”, and ‘SUNZ’ representing the sun – intends to operate from a location in Europe. However it intends to construct a “state-of-the-art net zero green energy-powered factory complex” in the south-east of Asia. The team “aims to be on the grid for the 2025/2026 season”.

“We are excited to see our investors share our vision of fusing youth culture and racing to create a team that will disrupt F1,” said Durand. “The sport’s popularity has grown exponentially and every current stakeholder in the sport has been responsible for that, but our guiding principle is to bring something different into the sport to appeal to new audiences.

“By being the only team operating outside the traditional F1 corridors and developing bespoke programmes to attract talent from underrepresented communities, we can bring a diversity of thought yet to be seen in F1.

“We of course aim to be competitive on the track but we also commit to entertaining fans off the track. To support our plans, we have already brought onboard an impressive team of motorsport executives, music and entertainment industry experts and creatives who will help bring this vision to life.”

Other parties have already declared an interest in joining the F1 grid after the FIA said it would consider applications to compete from the 2025, 2026 or 2027 seasons. Michael Andretti was the first to throw his hat into the ring, with a project backed by General Motors brand Cadillac. Former F1 team principal Craig Pollock is seeking to enter a team called Formula Equal, which intends to accumulate a workforce with an equal gender split, and has funding from sources in the Middle East, believed to be in Saudi Arabia.

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