Column: FIA license system needs overhaul for U.S. racing

Before starting to think about his 2023 plans, Colton Herta needs at least another week to himself.


He has contracts with McLaren for F1 testing and Andretti Autosport for IndyCar. However, he is also the focus of a lot of rumours that AlphaTauri wants him on the F1 grid the next season, subject to Herta being granted an exemption to obtain the licence required to race in the global series.

The sheer thought that the FIA, which oversees Formula One and numerous other international events, would award Herta a Super License without having earned it legitimately sparked a discussion about the present licencing system over the course of the Dutch Grand Prix weekend.

Herta, 22, tested on McLaren's simulator and spent two days in the vehicle in Portugal in July. As a result, the team is in a better position than anyone to evaluate him, the organisation stated in a statement on Sunday.

I don't want to be saying, "Oh, an IndyCar race, we know it's as good as this," when I'm sitting here. You cannot compare it, according to Guenther Steiner, head coach of the Haas team. "Let's talk about the rule change and, if you think it's incorrect, fix it going forward. However, there must be consensus among the involved parties.

The United States motorsports series are not given much weight by the FIA when it comes to licencing. To qualify for a Super License, a driver must amass 40 points based on their top three finishes over the preceding four seasons. While winning an IndyCar championship is worth the entire 40 points, the value declines significantly after that.

The FIA does not rate IndyCar or NASCAR fairly because it does not oversee either of those premier American racing series. For instance, winning the IndyCar championship awards the same number of Super License points as winning the F2 championship, the series immediately beneath F1.

While an Indy Lights championship is worth 20 points, a NASCAR Cup championship is only worth 15 points. The champion of the 10-race W Series, which is limited to female drivers, receives the same number of points as the victor of NASCAR's 36-race season.

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