Guenther Steiner says the Haas F1 Team are continuing to aid Pietro Fittipaldi’s bid to earn a Super Licence so he can race in Formula 1, but it is currently a difficult thing to achieve with the current regulations in place.
Fittipaldi is currently an appointed test driver for Haas but does not qualify to race in Formula 1 as he does not currently possess enough points to gain a Super Licence, with forty points over a three-year period the current qualifying amount.
The Brazilian currently has thirty-six points, mostly thanks to his Formula V8 3.5 championship win back in 2017, and he currently plies his trade in the DTM Series, racing for the Audi Sport WRT squad, although his current position of sixteenth in the championship standings makes it highly unlikely he’ll earn any points in this campaign.
His career did hit a low point in 2018 when he broke his legs in a high-speed crash at Spa-Francorchamps as he drove for DragonSpeed in the FIA World Endurance Championship, with the accident also hindering his season racing for Dale Coyne Racing in IndyCar and forcing him to miss the Indianapolis 500.
Steiner, the Team Principal of Haas, admits there are potential routes out there to get Fittipaldi those points needed to get that all-important Super Licence, with one recently brought in for 2020, where a driver can get points by driving in a free practice session during a Grand Prix weekend.
“He hasn’t got the Super Licence,” Steiner is quoted as saying by Motorsportweek.com. “That’s one of the problems of the young drivers at the moment, there are not many around with a Super Licence and to get a Super Licence it’s pretty difficult.
“There is now a solution. It was defined that the team can get points for the Super Licence by putting a driver in for FP1. If he’s four points away we see what we can do.”
Whilst Steiner admits putting Fittipaldi into a car during free practice would help the Brazilian, the struggles that current drivers Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean are going through with the troublesome VF-19 makes it difficult to accommodate the twenty-three-year-old, and as such there are no promises being made to him.
“For us it’s difficult at the moment,” admits Steiner. “We would do it [practice sessions] for him so he’s got something moving forward but in the situation we are in at the moment, it’s up and down and we need both drivers to be testing the car as much as possible.
“Otherwise we are doing something that is not focusing on the right thing, because our focus is still not to be ninth in the championship and to get better.
“That is why I cannot promise something to Pietro.”