There has been a lot of discussion recently surrounding Colton Herta’s ineligibility to obtain a Super License due to the lack of points earned in the past few IndyCar seasons.
Recently, news came out that Herta’s chances of joining the F1 grid next season have all but come to an end, largely due to a lack of headway in obtaining an exemption to the license requirements.
Graham Rahal, who is a 14-year veteran of IndyCar and whose family has been in the sport for over 40 years, added his voice to the conversation on Friday by sticking up for his competitor and commenting on how he feels F1 views the United States.
In response to a post on social media that stated “F1 has made it very clear for many years. They have no interest in US drivers, just US dollars,” Rahal showed some frustration by adding his own thoughts.
“Damn right,” said Rahal on Twitter. “F1 is an elitist sport. They don’t want us. Remember that. They want US companies money, they want wealthy US individuals money. But they don’t care about the rest. Always has been that way, always will be.
“And for those who want to say that Colton Herta didn’t “earn” the right. You’re off base. He’s as talented if not more than the rest. He’s a proven winner. He came to the top, and has done exceptionally well. F1 has had ride buyers for years who don’t hold a candle to [Herta]. FACTS!”
Rahal is never one to shy away from praising his competitors’ talents, and is one of the first to make his voice heard when the validity of their skills is questioned.
He has also been known to stand up for the validity of IndyCar itself whenever discussions arise concerning the series’ standing against other championships.
Rahal is not the first driver to give his full support to Herta’s talents, and many others have pointed out that the Super License points allocation seems to undervalue IndyCar based on the competitiveness of the series.
With the United States set to have three Grands Prix starting in 2023 with the addition of a street race in Las Vegas, there has been extra focus on any American teams and drivers that are attempting to join the series.
The owner of Herta’s current team, Michael Andretti, has been trying to convince others within F1 that he should be allowed to run his own team as well, but those efforts also appear to be on hold.
Andretti’s plan was to bring his star driver over to the international series to race in the fledgling team if he was given the green light to join the grid.
As it is, Herta now looks likely to stay in his current seat at Andretti Autosport for at least next season, with his best chance to be allowed into F1 hinging on him earning enough Super License points to cross the 40-point threshold.