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Herta officially denied in F1 superlicence bid by FIA

The IndyCar star was hoping to make an F1 switch in 2023, but the move is officially off as he does not meet the required number of points.

Colton Herta's hopes of making his Formula 1 debut in 2023 are over after the FIA officially denied a request to grant him a superlicence. Andretti Autosport star Herta was keen on the switch to F1 with AlphaTauri - with Helmut Marko planning on having the Californian replace Pierre Gasly should the Frenchman move to Alpine. However, a major stumbling block was Herta's lack of superlicence points as he only has 32 points, with 40 the required standard. An exemption of the grounds of force majeure was rejected as recent IndyCar seasons were not overly affected by COVID-19, with the FIA unwilling to change the rules to grant Herta the document he needed - thoughts echoed by a number of team bosses in the F1 paddock.

Herta F1 move officially off

There were suggestions that Herta's 2018 IndyLights points could be added to his tally, but as the field was not sufficient in numbers - something Herta could not control - there was unease about doing this. At the Italian Grand Prix, the FIA stated that it would not be "pressured" into amending the well-trodden structures in place around granting of superlicences. "The FIA confirms that an enquiry was made via the appropriate channels that led to the FIA confirming that the driver Colton Herta does not have the required number of points to be granted an FIA superlicence," a spokesperson told RacingNews365.com to officially confirm that the seven-time IndyCar race winner would be denied in his application. "The FIA continuously reviews its regulations and procedures, including with respect to superlicence eligibility, with the main factors being considered with respect to this topic being safety, experience and performance in the context of the pathway." Although the IndyCar season is now over, Herta can still add additional superlicence points in 2022 by participating in FP1 sessions - earning a point for each if he exceeds 100km. He is set to stay at Andretti for the 2023 season, with Yuki Tsunoda recently being announced as staying at AlphaTauri while Gasly's future is still not certain.

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