The FIA has announced that none of the organizations bidding to become Formula 1's 13th team in 2011 have met its requirements, and that the grid will therefore stay at 24 cars.
The governing body had invited applications from parties interested in filling the slot left vacant by the collapse of the US F1 project on the eve of the 2010 season. Several teams put in applications, including a partnership between former World Champion Jacques Villeneuve and Italian ex-GP2 team Durango, plus a new bid from rejected 2009 applicant Epsilon Euskadi. But the FIA World Motor Sport Council decided in a meeting today that none of the applicants were suitable.
"Following the press release of March 19, 2010 calling for expressions of interest to participate in the 2011 and 2012 seasons of the FIA Formula One World Championship, a number of interested parties expressed their interest," said an FIA statement. "It was considered that none of the candidates met the requirements to be granted an entry into the championship. Consequently, the allocation of the 13th team will not be granted."
A number of candidates for the entry withdrew their applications during the process, including multiple GP2 and Formula 3 champion squad ART and a group of American investors, Cypher Group. Others considered to be potential F1 entrants declined to participate, including Prodrive and Lola, both of which had made attempts to join the World Championship in previous years.
The three teams that entered F1 as part of last year's new team application processes – Hispania, Lotus and Virgin – have all yet to score or to regularly threaten the established midfield squads.