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'FIA prevented Herta from gaining the necessary F1 super licence points'

'FIA prevented Herta from gaining the necessary F1 super licence points'

21-01-2023 17:15 Last update: 18:43
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GPblog.com

Initially, not Nyck de Vries, but Colton Herta seemed to be the main candidate to take over Pierre Gasly's Formula 1 seat at AlphaTauri. To do so, the American had to look for points for his super licence, but in that quest he would have been actively thwarted by the FIA. So says Scott Goodyear, race director of US Formula 3 and Formula 4.

Herta was linked with Gasly's seat, who in turn would take over Fernando Alonso's vacant seat at Alpine. However, the 22-year-old Andretti driver was eight points short of obtaining his super licence. Red Bull Racing asked the FIA to make an exception, but the governing body did not comply.

At this, Herta wanted to try to accumulate the points elsewhere, but it soon became clear that that was not going to work. According to Goodyear, that was partly down to the FIA, from which the driver was not given permission to race in the US F3 class. "If you win the F3/F4/Formula Regional in this country, you’re awarded more points than you are if you win the Indy Lights championship," he began his story at the Racer to Racer-podcast.

'FIA didn't allow Herta to gain points'

In July 2022, Colton's father, Bryan Herta, made contact with Goodyear to discuss the possibilities of entering the F3 championship. "We were approving it, but he couldn’t get clearance from the FIA to be able to run that and be given an opportunity to collect some points," Goodyear explains.

He continued: "It was difficult. The teams and the drivers in F3 were ecstatic, because they thought somebody of Colton’s calibre was going to come to run in the F3 and get a real chance to see how their abilities matched up to somebody that’s one of the best drivers." For Herta, F1 didn't happen partly because of this, but he may still get the chance in the future if Michael Andretti manages to put a team on the F1 grid.