Max Verstappen feels it is "tough" and "painful" that Colton Herta missed out on a Formula 1 superlicence for the 2023 season.
IndyCar ace Herta was heavily linked with an AlphaTauri seat for 2023, but his hopes were scuppered as he did not have the required 40 qualifying points to claim the superlicence required to compete in F1.
Herta only had 32 from his efforts in IndyCar and, despite Red Bull Motorsport Advisor Helmut Marko's best efforts, the Californian was not granted a waiver.
Herta will remain with the Andretti Autosport squad in 2023, knowing that winning the title would secure him a block of 40 points, which would put him in contention for an F1 seat in 2024.
Verstappen on Herta superlicence
Verstappen - whose entry into F1 in 2015 at 17 prompted the points system being introduced - believes Herta would be capable of racing in F1.
"I think in the past, a lot of great drivers wouldn't have been able to jump into Formula 1," Verstappen explained to NBC Motorsports.
"It is very tough and I don't always agree with it.
"I do think that for some drivers it is sometimes necessary, but when you have some really big talents, they don't need to do 24 years in junior categories to get all those points.
"It is a tough one, it works out for some people and then of course it is very painful if you don't as you are denied an opportunity to get into Formula 1.
"If Colton wins the championship in IndyCar, then that opens a lot of doors."
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