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McLaren confirm F1 opportunity for American talent

Highly-rated IndyCar driver Colton Herta will test for McLaren in 2022 as the F1 team explore their future options.

McLaren have announced that IndyCar race winner Colton Herta will test F1 machinery with the team in 2022 as part of a programme to "evaluate young talent for the future".

Aged just 18 at the time, Herta became the youngest-ever winner in IndyCar history in 2019 when he took victory at the Circuit of the Americas. Since then, he has added six victories and seven pole positions to his name.

His opportunity to test for McLaren comes under F1's new Sporting Regulations, which allow teams to run one-year-old cars - in this case the 2021-spec MCL35M - within the Testing of Previous Cars (TPC) provision.

McLaren explained that their programme "provides an opportunity for the team to test potential drivers and evaluate young talent for the future", with further details to be confirmed in due course.

McLaren keen to see how Herta adapts to F1 machinery

McLaren team boss Andreas Seidl welcomed the arrangement as it was announced to the world.

"Colton is a proven talent in IndyCar and we will be interested to see how he adapts to a Formula 1 car," he said.

"We believe this testing programme will provide him with valuable experience while demonstrating the benefit of expanding previous car testing to showcase promising drivers for the future."

Herta, who races for Andretti Autosport in IndyCar, added: "I want to thank McLaren for the opportunity to get my first laps in a Formula 1 car, which has always been on my racing bucket list.

"This will be a great opportunity for me to gain some valuable experience in a new form of motorsport and learn from such an established team like McLaren F1."

McLaren gave their own IndyCar racer, Pato O'Ward, an F1 outing at last year's post-season test in Abu Dhabi.

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