Rodin Carlin makes F1 entry bid with New Zealand-based team and woman driver


Rodin Carlin is among the teams bidding to join the F1 grid in 2026. Owner David Dicker says he would set up a New Zealand-based constructor and "guarantee" to field a woman driver

Rodin Carlin car leaving pitbox

Rodin Carlin already runs teams in F4, F3 and F2

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The team that steered Lando Norris, George Russell, Kevin Magnussen and Carlos Sainz towards their F1 careers is understood to have applied to join the Formula 1 grid with one seat guaranteed for a woman driver.

Rodin Carlin, which runs F2, F3 and F4 teams, as well as entries in the new F1 Academy, would run cars designed and built in New Zealand, powered by its own engines, under plans drawn up by its wealthy tech entrepreneur owner.

David Dicker has already used his fortune to set up the Rodin car company, which produces a single-seater with F1 levels of performance. He has also funded three-time W Series champion Jamie Chadwick in her single-seater career and said he’d be “perfectly happy” to put her in the car.

He told Motor Sport that he had more than $500m resources to fully fund the bid, which would expand F1’s global presence away from the predominantly British-based teams.

David Dicker with Jamie Chadwick

Dicker with Jamie Chadwick: the W Series champion has had Rodin backing


Speaking from New Zealand’s South Island a few days ago, he said: “We’ll make the whole car here and we guarantee to put a woman in one of the seats. We’d be the only team that’s got a full junior programme. We’ve been covering the entire spectrum from F4 all the way up to F2 and no-one else is even close to doing it.

“A lot of people would be really interested in getting a team that was based in New Zealand into the F1 programme. It’d do a lot for Formula 1.”

Racing’s governing body, the FIA, opened applications for new Formula 1 teams in February. The deadline for teams to register their interest and pay a $20,000 admin fee was May 15 — extended from April 30.

Up to two teams could join the grid and a decision was due to be taken by the end of June, but the extension could mean this takes longer. There is no obligation for the FIA to accept any applications.

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New entrants will require the approval of Formula One Management (FOM), which controls the commercial rights.

This has so far proved a barrier to Andretti Global, which has a bid backed by Cadillac. FOM has faced resistance from several teams, partly because it will dilute the share of F1 profits that is currently split between the ten teams.

Although new entrants must currently pay $200m to compensate for the effect, F1’s rising revenues mean that teams value themselves more highly, and see the price as too cheap.

“It’s obviously a crazy scheme and I can’t imagine that we’d be successful,” said Dicker, who founded Australian IT distributor Dicker Data, which turned over £1.6bn last year. “But if you look at it, if you look at our actual resources, we actually have a very compelling offering.

“I’ve been thinking about it for a couple of months to be honest. Just sort of oscillated back and forth about whether to apply or not.”

Rodin FZED

640bhp Rodin FZED offers F1 levels of performance


Dicker took a majority shareholding in the Carlin team via Rodin cars earlier this year, and would use its expertise to run an F1 programme.

Cars would be designed and built at Rodin’s New Zealand facility in Mt Lyford, Canterbury, which has the equipment to  produce the FZED carbon-fibre single-seater, and will also be used for the forthcoming FZERO track-only hypercar, with a bespoke V10 engine.

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“We actually have a very compelling offering because we’ll be making our own power unit,” said Dicker in a wide-ranging interview. “I’m sure none of the other guys that are pitching in for now I’m going to make their own power unit.

“We’ve already got a pretty sophisticated facility. We’ve got a tonne of gear. So, you know, we’ve got pretty much all the equipment we already need now to build the car.”

At the time of speaking, Dicker was waiting on further information from the FIA before making his decision, but is now understood to have applied. Andretti is thought to have lodged an application, along with British-based Hitech GP and Asian-based LKY SUNZ.

“Getting the US team in there would also be good and I won’t be surprised if they let [Hitech] in — [Director] Ollie Oaks is a nice guy,” said Dicker. “But the problem is, it’s just another English-based team and so they’re not spreading the pie around. People outside UK and don’t care about having another UK team.”