There were a number of eyebrows raised when the FIA released their new F1 Super license accreditation scheme. At the time it was announced, almost a third of the current drivers would have failed to qualify had the new criteria been in place at the birth of their F1 careers.
A minimum age limit of 18 was imposed, together with a driver accumulating 300km of testing. The big change was that new drivers to F1 must no amass 40 points over the previous three years in the ‘junior’ racing categories.
The future F2 championship retains its top billing as the series where the most points can be earned, however the FIA have added both DTM and the WTCC to the series in the qualifying table.
This decision recognises the fact drivers have made the transition from DTM to F1 previously.
More importantly, the FIA have changed the regulation on retaining an F1 Super License. Unless she competed in five GP races this year, Suzie Wolff would have lost her F1 Super License – as would Pascal Wehrlein.
Now, F1 drivers will retain their Super Licenses for three years before having to qualify again and the winner of the Formula E series will automatically qualify for a Super License.
In Mexico yesterday, the WMSC has approved the update of the Super License regulations with a view to:
“Increasing flexibility for drivers having qualified for a Super License, but do not have the opportunity to race in Formula One. These drivers will now keep this possibility for three years (e.g. typical F1 test driver situation).
“Enlarging the list of Series included in the Super License point system following numerous requests from series for inclusion.
“Adjusting of points given to some series already included to better reflect the strength of series.
“Granting the champion of the FIA Formula E Championship with a Super License, although the Championship is not part of the points system.”