Formula 1 | Herta believes he is “fast enough” to run in F1

Colton Herta made his first F1 test this week in Portimão. IndyCar driver Andretti admits it took him a while to get started and isn’t sure if his pace would have been the same as last year’s Portuguese Grand Prix holders.

“It’s a circuit whose aspects are very difficult to understand, due to the wind and many different factors” Herta explains. “I was happy with my lap time, but we have slightly different tires than we would have had on a race weekend.

“And if you look at last year’s drivers’ quotes, they were talking about the wind here and how much that can change the car from one corner to another. So when it comes to lap times, it’s a little difficult to I think the engineers will know, looking at the data, whether I was fast or not. “

While she doesn’t know what her lap times were, Herta believes she was quick enough to convince McLaren to offer her more tests with the MCL35M, which is expected to happen later this year or next.

“Yeah … you can’t say no to that question, otherwise I wouldn’t be a professional driver. So yeah, I think I’m pretty fast. I guess time will tell if the team is okay. I have more opportunities in the car and I hope to be able to prove it “.

Herta would like to test an F1 2022

Herta would like to compete in EL1 with the 2022 car, although she likes how the TPCs are doing, these tests with the MCL35M: “Friday’s practice is definitely something I’m willing to accept.”

“When it comes to TPC test days, it doesn’t get better because you have the whole track to yourself, you have all that time in the car that you wouldn’t have in 60 minutes in free practice. 1. But that would be nice to get a taste of these F1 2022 “.

The American does not know how long it would take him to be fully prepared: “It’s hard to know where you’re in front of these guys when you’re doing a test program in a one-year-old car.”

“But when it comes to comfort, I felt very comfortable in the car. I felt the limit. I might not have the consistency, I would come with a few more days, but I felt I was close.”

McLaren says nothing about Herta’s chances

Andreas Seidl was asked what Herta could do in the future for the team, and the head of McLaren F1 remains cautious: “The goal of this test was, as Colton mentioned, to give it a chance to test an F1 car for the first time and explore its performance.

“That was the goal and what comes next is something we go step by step, we also take our time. When you do those two days of testing there are different goals, obviously.

“We especially wanted to give Colton a chance to get used to the car, but also change the approach to working on different driving techniques. Getting used to the different operational aspects of Formula 1 race weekends, such as compare different tire compounds, drive with different fuel loads, do classification tests and race simulations “.

“I have to say that the team was very impressed with the way Colton overcame all these challenges and his professional approach. And what was great to see was also that his fitness kept him going through both. days, knowing how difficult it can be to be in Formula 1 on a circuit like Portimão “.

“At the end of the day, this approach with the team allowed him to pick up the pace, to gain confidence little by little. And also to always find the right balance between taking risks and keeping the car on the track, which is obviously important. also in a test like this “.

Comprehensive analysis of the EL1 test?

McLaren F1 will carefully study the Herta test data, as it could lead to a Formula 1 test session for the American driver. The team is to lead a rookie twice this year, and both Herta and Pato O’Ward are potential candidates for that opportunity.

“In the coming days the team will analyze the data in detail, to get a first idea of ​​the potential that Colton has shown in our car. Then we will have a better picture or a good idea.”

“And that will obviously also be part of our assessment, as the next steps might look like. As you know, the regulations require us to perform an F1 debutant twice this year in free practice 1.”

“We plan to do it on the weekends after the summer holidays, so we still have time to decide when we will do it and who will put us in the car. And, yes, it’s a process we’re thinking about, and that will continue to be so in the coming weeks. “

O’Ward also has to ride as part of the TPC, and Seidl confirms that this is currently being considered within the team: “In terms of additional testing opportunities for Duck, that’s something we’re evaluating right now.”

“He did a good test with us last year in Abu Dhabi, where we were very happy with how he prepared for the test, how he behaved throughout the test.

“So I’d say our first impression or conclusion, while it may seem like a boring answer, is that we’re happy with what we’ve both shown so far.”

Leave a Comment