Where are Formula 1 teams based? Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull and more

Formula 1 is a global championship with races happening across the world, but where are today's teams based? Click here to find out.

Where are Formula 1 teams based? Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull and more

Though F1 race teams spend most of their year globetrotting, each one still has a place to call home. Usually known as the factory, it’s not as glamorous as the F1 pitlane – but it does offer a permanent base. This is where the cars are built. And, if there’s enough time between races during the frenetic season, it’s also the place to which they return for maintenance. Even on race weekends, teams run numerous operations remotely from the factory.

Valtteri Bottas is announced as the new Mercedes AMG F1 driver for 2017

Valtteri Bottas is announced as the new Mercedes AMG F1 driver for 2017

Photo by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images

Mercedes

• Location: Brackley, United Kingdom
• Founded: 1954
• National flag they race under: Germany
• Wins: 124
• Constructors’ championships: 8
• Drivers’ championships: 9

Mercedes took over the Brackley premises previously occupied by Brawn, and before them Honda and British American Racing. At the time Mercedes’ current Formula 1 incarnation began in 2010 (they had previously competed in the 1950s), the proximity to what is now the Mercedes-Benz Technology Centre made practical sense. The latter, in Brixworth, was originally home to the team’s specialist engine partner Illmor.

The Ferrari factory in Maranello

The Ferrari factory in Maranello

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Ferrari

• Location: Maranello, Italy
• Founded: 1950
• National flag they race under: Italy
• Wins: 241
• Constructors’ championships: 16
• Drivers’ championships: 15

As home to both Formula 1’s oldest team and the world’s most famous road car marque, the northern Italian town of Maranello is synonymous with the Ferrari factory in a way that Brackley or Milton Keynes will never be. It’s no surprise to find reminders of the Scuderia’s heritage dotting the streets there. Down one of those streets from the factory is the private test track Ferrari built in 1972: Fiorano. Though current regulations mean the F1 team can’t make use of the facility as it could in the past, it’s still important for Ferrari’s road cars and for marketing purposes. An example of the latter? Charles Leclerc signalled the end of the 2020 lockdown by driving his F1 machine out of the famous archway at the factory, then trundling through the town to the figure-of-eight test circuit.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

Red Bull

• Location: Milton Keynes, United Kingdom
• Founded: 2005
• National flag they race under: Austria
• Wins: 83
• Constructors’ championships: 4
• Drivers’ championships: 5

Red Bull has had its cars rolling in Formula 1 since 2005, but its base already had a few years of history. The Austrian-owned team moved into the Milton Keynes factory that was previously home to Jaguar Racing and, before that, Stewart Grand Prix. Now a key location for a big brand that knows what it’s about, the foyer features a grandiose display of Grand Prix trophies netted by the team.

McLaren Technology Centre in Woking

McLaren Technology Centre in Woking

Photo by: GP Racing

McLaren

• Location: Woking, UK
• Founded: 1964
• National flag they race under: British
• Wins: 183
• Constructors’ championships: 8
• Drivers’ championships: 12

McLaren has been based in Woking for as long as most Formula 1 fans can remember. Though they only moved into their existing McLaren Technology Centre (MTC) in 2004, the team had previously been based in a more modest location a little closer to the town. Old-timers who worked at those Albert Drive premises would hardly recognise the MTC, where the building itself represents a key part of McLaren’s innovation portfolio. Consisting of six 18-metre-wide ‘fingers’, the MTC is built around a lake. There’s a strong emphasis on sustainability in both its operations and philosophy.

Otmar Szafnauer, Team Principal and CEO, Aston Martin F1, Anthony Bamford, chairman of JCB, and Lawrence Stroll, Owner, Aston Martin F1

Otmar Szafnauer, Team Principal and CEO, Aston Martin F1, Anthony Bamford, chairman of JCB, and Lawrence Stroll, Owner, Aston Martin F1

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Aston Martin

• Location: Silverstone, United Kingdom
• Founded: 2021
• National flag they race under: British
• Wins: 0
• Constructors’ championships: 0
• Drivers’ championships: 0

Aston Martin’s factory, which sits just across the road from the gates to Silverstone, has been through enough Formula 1 rebrands to make your head spin. But it can ultimately be traced back to Jordan Grand Prix, which went F1 racing in 1991. The team founded by Eddie Jordan then became Midland, Spyker, Force India and Racing Point, before Aston Martins began rolling out of the factory in time for the 2021 season. An ambitious upgrade to the facility is now underway.

Nicolas Prost, Development Driver, Lotus F1 Team, Davide Valsecchi, Third Driver, Lotus F1 Team, Kimi Raikkonen, Driver, Lotus F1 Team, Gerard Lopez, Chairman, Lotus F1 Team, Eric Boullier, Team Principal, Lotus F1 Team, Romain Grosjean, Driver, Lotus F1 Team, and Jerome D’Ambrosio, Reserve Driver, Lotus F1 Team with the E21

Nicolas Prost, Development Driver, Lotus F1 Team, Davide Valsecchi, Third Driver, Lotus F1 Team, Kimi Raikkonen, Driver, Lotus F1 Team, Gerard Lopez, Chairman, Lotus F1 Team, Eric Boullier, Team Principal, Lotus F1 Team, Romain Grosjean, Driver, Lotus F1 Team, and Jerome D’Ambrosio, Reserve Driver, Lotus F1 Team with the E21

Photo by: Lotus F1 Team

Alpine

• Location: Enstone, United Kingdom
• Founded: 2021
• Flag they race under: French
• Wins: 1
• Constructors’ championships: 0
• Drivers’ championships: 0

This is another factory to have ‘changed hands’ numerous times, with a particularly complex history of branding and ownership twists providing the backdrop. But the facility’s story began in the days of the Benetton team, which moved there in the early 1990s. Since 2002 it has served as home to Renault (twice) and Lotus-Renault/Lotus F1. It has borne Alpine branding since 2021.

Haas F1

Haas F1

Photo by: Haas F1 Team

Haas

• Location: Kannapolis, USA; Banbury, England; Maranello, Italy
• Founded: 2016
• Flag they race under: USA
• Wins: 0
• Constructors’ championships: 0
• Drivers’ championships: 0

Haas goes completely off-piste in terms of its ‘factory’ set-up. Where other teams try to keep things under one roof or at least in the same area – and all are based in Europe – Haas has three bases spread across two continents! As home to sister NASCAR team Stewart-Haas Racing, Kannapolis was chosen as location for the official base. But running an F1 team entirely out of the United States isn’t practical in the Europe-heavy calendar, so there’s a workshop in England where the cars are tended between races. This location, in Banbury, was formerly home to the Marussia team.

But it gets more complicated still, because Haas uses Ferrari engines and has close links with the Scuderia. Thus, Haas has a base in Maranello too. Simply put – and there is plenty of overlap – America does administration, England does operations and Italy does the design/build.

Oleg Karpov, editor Motorsport.com, Franz Tost, Team Principal, Scuderia AlphaTauri at the AlphaTauri Faenza tour

Oleg Karpov, editor Motorsport.com, Franz Tost, Team Principal, Scuderia AlphaTauri at the AlphaTauri Faenza tour

Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images

AlphaTauri

• Location: Faenza, Italy
• Founded: 2020
• National flag they race under: Italy
• Wins: 1
• Constructors’ championships: 0
• Drivers’ championships: 0

Though the AlphaTauri branding is still young, the team’s Faenza base is strongly linked to the historic Minardi squad. Founder Giancarlo Minardi had in fact included the town’s crest – a rampant lion – in its team badge. The perennial F1 tail-enders were based there from 1985 until 2005, after which the location was taken over by Red Bull and morphed into Scuderia Toro Rosso. The factory underwent its switch to AlphaTauri colours in time for 2020.

The Sauber factory

The Sauber factory

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Alfa Romeo

• Location: Hinwil, Switzerland
• Founded: 1950
• Flag they race under: Switzerland
• Wins: 10
• Constructors’ championships: 0
• Drivers’ championships: 2

Formula 1 cars have been run out of Alfa’s current Hinwil premises since 1993, when Sauber entered the world championship under its own name. Since then, the squad founded by Peter Sauber has alternated between manufacturer partnerships (notably with BMW) and operating as a marque of its own. Alfa Romeo has had full naming rights to the operation since 2019. While Switzerland has no racetracks within its borders, Hinwil is certainly a central, practical location for the European rump of the calendar.

Williams factory hedge

Williams factory hedge

Photo by: Motorsport Images

Williams

• Location: Grove, United Kingdom
• Founded: 1977
• National flag they race under: British
• Wins: 114
• Constructors’ championships: 9
• Drivers’ championships: 7

Having grown up in Didcot – and been based in the shadow of its cooling towers for many of its most successful years – Williams moved a little way across Oxfordshire in 1996. This new base, where the team remains today, was previously owned by Janssen Pharmaceutical Ltd. But the ‘topiary’ (sculpted hedge) of a car making a pitstop – complete with mechanics – leaves no doubt that this is now home to a Formula 1 operation!

Why are so many F1 teams based in the UK?

The United Kingdom has been the hub of the Formula 1 world for several decades now. Though the first great racing marques, such as Alfa Romeo, Mercedes and Ferrari, were European automotive giants, the 1950s saw the emergence of specialist British engineering operations able to take them on in Formula 1. This was crucial in Britain’s emergence as a focal point for the industry.

Vanwall set the tone by winning the 1957 British Grand Prix and claiming the constructors’ world championship the following year. Success then began to flow for Lotus, Cooper, BRM and the Coventry-Climax engine. With most of these operations willing to scale up and sell their wares to privateers, an ecosystem grew up around Formula 1 in the UK – and more specifically in the south-east of England. When Australia’s Jack Brabham and New Zealand’s Bruce McLaren founded their own teams in the 1960s, for example, it made sense for them to set up shop in that area too.

Patrick Head and Frank Williams at the launch of the Williams FW06 at their new Factory

Patrick Head and Frank Williams at the launch of the Williams FW06 at their new Factory

Photo by: Sutton Images

It didn’t hurt that the UK offered plenty of circuits for testing and development. While there had been few places to go racing before World War 2, disused RAF airfields such as Silverstone were re-purposed into circuits when peace came. This played an important role in the motorsport industry taking root where it did: even today, teams like Mercedes, Red Bull and Aston Martin are based close to the British Grand Prix venue.

Though the majority of Formula 1 races have always involved a trip across the Channel, and other locations may have been more geographically sound as a base, the UK offered little incentive for teams to move once an industry had developed around not just Formula 1 but motorsport as a whole. The pool of mechanical and engineering talent available in the UK snowballed, and today the south-east of England is probably home to more skilled motorsport specialists than anywhere else in the world.

Now that entering Formula 1 has become highly restricted and exceedingly specialised, there is almost no way to break into the series without buying out an existing team – including its premises. Therefore it looks likely that the majority of F1 teams will continue to be based in the UK for the foreseeable future.

shares
comments
MotoGP title leader Quartararo working on Mercedes F1 car test
Previous article

MotoGP title leader Quartararo working on Mercedes F1 car test

Next article

Verstappen condemns "disgusting" burning of Mercedes merchandise by fans

Verstappen condemns "disgusting" burning of Mercedes merchandise by fans
The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat Plus

The other McLaren exile hoping to follow Perez's path to a top F1 seat

After being ditched by McLaren earlier in his F1 career Sergio Perez fought his way back into a seat with a leading team. BEN EDWARDS thinks the same could be happening to another member of the current grid

How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay Plus

How studying Schumacher helped make Coulthard a McLaren F1 mainstay

Winner of 13 grands prix including Monaco and survivor of a life-changing plane crash, David Coulthard could be forgiven for having eased into a quiet retirement – but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, in fact he’s busier than ever, running an award-winning media company and championing diversity in motor racing. Not bad for someone who, by his own admission, wasn’t quite the fastest driver of his generation…

Formula 1
Aug 7, 2022
Could F1 move to a future beyond carbonfibre? Plus

Could F1 move to a future beyond carbonfibre?

Formula 1 has ambitious goals for improving its carbon footprint, but could this include banishing its favoured composite material? PAT SYMONDS considers the alternatives to carbonfibre and what use, if any, those materials have in a Formula 1 setting

Formula 1
Aug 6, 2022
How Russell has proven he deserves to be Hamilton's Mercedes heir Plus

How Russell has proven he deserves to be Hamilton's Mercedes heir

He’s fast, he’s smart, and he’s already shown he’s not going to let Max Verstappen intimidate him. George Russell won’t say it, but LUKE SMITH says he’s ready to take the lead at Mercedes when Lewis Hamilton moves on to a quieter life. And – whisper it – Mercedes and Lewis are starting to think so too

Formula 1
Aug 5, 2022
The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin move Plus

The traits that fuelled Alonso's unexpected Aston Martin move

Fernando Alonso’s bombshell switch to Aston Martin sent shockwaves through Formula 1, not least at Alpine that finds itself tangled in a contract standoff with Oscar Piastri. Not shy of a bold career move and with a CV punctuated by them, there were numerous hints that trouble was brewing

Formula 1
Aug 4, 2022
The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships Plus

The elements Ferrari must resolve to first save face, then win championships

OPINION: Ferrari's Formula 1 title hopes look all but over after another strategic blunder in last week's Hungarian Grand Prix denied Charles Leclerc the chance to fight for victory, while handing it to chief rival Max Verstappen. The Scuderia now faces intense scrutiny over what it must now do to finally become a genuine factor in championship battles

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2022
The clues about Hamilton’s F1 retirement plans revealed after Vettel’s decision Plus

The clues about Hamilton’s F1 retirement plans revealed after Vettel’s decision

OPINION: Sebastian Vettel is set to leave Formula 1 at the end of 2022 and will, rather shockingly, be replaced by Fernando Alonso at Aston Martin. But what about the final chapter of the other driver that defined the post-Michael Schumacher era? In Hungary, Lewis Hamilton spoke about his future in the context of Vettel’s upcoming departure, which offered clues on how long it will last

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2022
Why all signs point to F1’s Monaco special relationship continuing Plus

Why all signs point to F1’s Monaco special relationship continuing

OPINION: With more potential venues than there are slots in future calendars, rumours have been circulating that the Monaco Grand Prix could be a casualty of F1’s expansion into new markets. But MARK GALLAGHER thinks this is highly unlikely

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2022