Zapping Sports Auto Moto F1 – Max Verstappen: does he still have weaknesses?
Should a Formula 2 title be a passport to Formula 1? Logically, yes. In football, a Ligue 2 champion team is automatically entitled to a chance in Ligue 1. In motorsport, it’s more complicated. During last six seasons, only three junior championship winners – Charles Leclerc, George Russell and Mick Schumacher – obtained a steering wheel in the queen discipline from the following campaign.
And the others ? The winner 2022 – Felipe Drugovich – will be watching Fernando Alonso closely next year as a reserve at Aston Martin, with no further promises. His predecessor, Oscar Piastri, waited a year on the dock, reviewing the operation of Alpine and making contacts at McLaren. Titled in F2 just before Covid-19, Nyck de Vries became Formula E world champion with Mercedes (2021) and waited almost three seasons before an opportunity at the top deigned to arise.
Caused by the appendicitis of Alex Albon, the impromptu debut of the Dutchman caused an electric shock. His ninth place in the Italian Grand Prix at the controls of a Williams he had only driven for two hours sparked interest from the British team with a view to 2023… but also from Alpine and Alpha Tauri. Proof that the teams of the queen discipline do not have an eye for what is happening elsewhere, including on the same circuit on the same weekend.
How to put these drivers on the radar of Formula 1 teams? Let’s recycle the old idea of merit scholarship. For example, imagine that Liberty Media offers 10 million euros to the winner of the F2 championship to finance his debut at the top level. What give a breath of financial air to Haas or Williams and the stakes at the university of mechanical sports. The thing has already been experienced. Titled in Formula Atlantic, the French Simon Pagenaud had benefited fifteen years ago from a suitcase of 2 million dollars to debut at the highest level in the United States. Indycar champion (2016) and winner of the Indianapolis 500, the Poitevin has largely justified the kitty…
A contract of naming could fund the deal by christening the Formula 2 championship Tartempion. At worst, if no sponsor comes forward, the mechanism would never cost more than a sixth of the amount paid each year by Canal + to broadcast F1 on its antennas…
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