Ex-Red Bull junior and IndyCar star blasts FIA Super License requirements

Current IndyCar star Patricio O'Ward has voiced his displeasure over the FIA's Super License requirements


Former Red Bull junior driver Patricio ‘Pato’ O’Ward has criticised the current FIA Super License points requirements, saying his fourth and third-place finishes in the 2020 and 2021 IndyCar standings should be more than enough to justify his ability behind the wheel of a race car.

Now signed with McLaren‘s IndyCar project, O’Ward recently completed the end of season Formula 1 test at Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina circuit. Despite his strong testing pace and his IndyCar performances, O’Ward still doesn’t meet the 40 point threshold required to secure an F1 Super License, with the Mexican driver currently 10 points short.

“For me it’s ridiculous that someone who finished third and fourth in the IndyCar series doesn’t get 40 points for the super license. I think many drivers would agree with me,” O’Ward told Motorsport-Total.

“At the end of the day you depend on whether people want to give you something or not. And if they don’t, that’s a shame, you’ll just have to wait another year and get ten more points I guess.”

O’Ward’s Formula 1 Dream

Despite being committed to his IndyCar program, O’Ward openly admits that his ultimate dream would be to race in Formula 1.

“At the moment I only have one focus, and that’s called IndyCars,” O’Ward continued.

“Who knows whether Formula 1 will be an option or not. If it comes, I would take it 100 percent. Any driver in my position would do that because it’s Formula 1.

“I used to watch this and dreamed about it. And the dream you have as a child will never go away.”

What are the current Super License requirements?

There are six main requirements a driver must meet in order to be eligible for a Formula 1 Super License. They are as follows:

  1. The driver must be 18 years of age.
  2. The driver must have a valid driving license.
  3. The driver must hold a Grade A competition license.
  4. The driver must pass a theoretical test on various Formula 1 regulations.
  5. The driver must have completed at least 80% of two full seasons of any of the FIA sanctioned single-seater championships.
  6. The driver must have accumulated at least 40 Super License points over the course of three consecutive seasons.

Super License points are awarded across several categories of racing, with drivers eligible for points right from their karting days, with more competitive championships such as Formula 2 yielding a greater number of points.

Points are also awarded for free practice appearances, on the caveat that a driver has already accumulated 25 points or has made a certain number of appearances in Formula 2.

Verstappen’s Role

The current requirements surrounding the Super License are a byproduct of Max Verstappen’s phenomenal rise through the junior formula ranks, which saw him make his F1 debut at the age of 17.

Given the fact that the Dutchman is now the reigning F1 World Champion, it does cast a light on whether or not the Super License points system in place is required to begin with.

John Smith
John Smithhttps://total-motorsport.com
Editor at Total-Motorsport.com and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
- Advertisment -


Alex Bowman celebrates victory at the 2024 Chicago Street Race | NASCAR

How rain strategy helped Alex Bowman end his drought in Chicago

Alex Bowman and his job with Hendrick Motorsports was never really in question as his contract runs through the...
Lewis Hamilton, Lando Norris and Max Verstappen 1 at the 2024 British GP | Mercedes

F1 Driver Ratings β€” 2024 British GP

Lewis Hamilton finally ended his long wait for a race victory at the Formula 1 2024 British GP as...
George Russell leads the field into Turn 1 at the 2024 British GP | Mercedes

F1 Winners and Losers from the British GP

Lewis Hamilton emerged victorious in one of the most memorable races in recent Formula 1 history, which begs the...
Lewis Hamilton celebrates after winning the 2024 British GP | Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton masterclass proves he can take fight to Verstappen

Lewis Hamilton basked in the glory of his long-awaited victory at the British Grand Prix, celebrating in front of...
Max Verstappen looks on at the 2024 Austrian GP | Chris Graythen / Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen rues ‘poor’ British GP as Red Bull battle rare issue

Max Verstappen conceded it was a "poor afternoon" for Red Bull at the Formula 1 2024 British Grand Prix...
Lando Norris with engineers at 2024 British GP | McLaren F1 Team

Are McLaren becoming ‘new Ferrari’ after another strategy blunder?

Lando Norris' media appearances after the British GP were a genuinely tough watch, with reporters seemingly counselling the 24-year-old...
Race winner Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes Max Verstappen on the podium after the 2024 British Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Lewis Hamilton: British GP win more crucial to Mercedes than Russell victory

Lewis Hamilton explained why he felt his victory at the Formula 1 2024 British Grand Prix on Sunday was...
Carlos Sainz at the 2024 Austrian GP | Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

F1 2024 British GP – Fastest Lap

Carlos Sainz snatched the fastest lap at the 2024 British GP at the final opportunity as an all-time classic...
Lando Norris during 2024 British GP | McLaren F1 Team

F1 Standings after 2024 British Grand Prix

An emotional 2024 British Grand Prix saw Lewis Hamilton take a record-breaking win at Silverstone, outsmarting Lando Norris and...
Max Verstappen leads Lando Norris of McLaren during the 2024 British Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 2024 British GP: Driver of the Day

There is a reason why the British Grand Prix remains the hottest attraction on the Formula 1 calendar and...
- Advertisment -