Colton Herta continues to hold ambitions to race in Formula 1 in the future, as long as it ends up with him running in a front-running team.
The NTT IndyCar Series driver with Andretti Autosport, the youngest winner of an IndyCar event when he won at the Circuit of the Americas in 2019, raced in Europe back in 2015 and 2016 before moving back to his homeland, and now wants to return to experience Formula 1 machinery.
Herta, who won the most recent IndyCar event at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course to move up to fourth in the Drivers’ Championship standings, says he would only move to Formula 1 if the opportunity to race in a front-running team materialises, or if he can run in another team with the view of moving up to the front if his performances are good enough.
“I’d love to give Formula 1 a crack,” Herta is quoted as saying by RACER.com. “I think it would have to mean either being with a top three team or incentives of, if I do good enough, getting to a top three team.
“So being at Alfa, or something like that for a year or two, and if I do good enough, maybe I can move up to a Ferrari or a Red Bull.”
The United States of America has, in recent years, had a lean time of it when it comes to drivers in Formula 1, with only current IndyCar racer Alexander Rossi having raced in the sport in the past thirteen years. Rossi raced five times for the Marussia F1 Team in 2015. The last full-time racer was Scott Speed in 2007 with Scuderia Toro Rosso.
Herta says he would love to race in Formula 1, but he knows he would currently struggle to acquire the Superlicence points needed, although IndyCar does offer points towards it.
“I think it’s tough, because I don’t have the Superlicence points, but who knows; maybe in this next year or two, if I finish good enough in the championship, it’ll get me close enough to where maybe the teams will consider me,” added Herta.
“I think it’d be awesome. I think this is one of the markets (where) F1 lacks. It’s a huge market. I think you can see the TV numbers in the U.S. aren’t actually amazing for what you would think Formula 1 would get.
“So I think if having that U.S. driver can push the market forward and drive the market, I think it’d be very beneficial for Formula 1. But I’m perfectly happy driving IndyCars for the rest of my career if that’s what happens and doing endurance races with BMW or whoever it might be in the future in IMSA.
“I’d love to give it a shot; I think you’d be a once in a lifetime opportunity.“But if I don’t, I think I’m going to be just fine and enjoy driving IndyCars just as much as I’d enjoy being in a Formula 1 paddock.”