Red Bull junior driver Dan Ticktum missed out on his chance to test for the Formula 1 team this week because his one-year ban prevented him from acquiring the necessary licence.
The team has announced Daniel Ricciardo and simulator driver Jake Dennis as its drivers for the two-day test, which begins tomorrow at the Hungaroring.
“You don’t need a superlicence to test a Formula 1 car, you require an A Licence,” said Whiting.
“For an A Licence you have to get 14 points, only four of which are based on results, five are given if you complete 80% of two championships that qualify, and five are given at the discretion of the driver’s ASN [national motor sport club]. So normally you’ve got 10, but Daniel didn’t get four for results.
“This is all because of his problem in the UK where he effectively got a two-year ban, half of which was suspended, and he missed two half-seasons. So unfortunately that’s the case, he simply didn’t qualify.”
Ticktum’s only qualifying championship result from the past three seasons is his sixth place in the 2015 MSA F4 (now British F4) season. He did not complete the championship after he was banned from racing for a year, with a further year’s ban suspended, for an incident at the Silverstone round.
Ticktum passed 10 cars during a Safety Car period and deliberately collided with rival Ricky Collard following a first-lap collision between the pair.
The ban meant he sat out much of the 2016 season. He returned to racing at the end of the year.
Red Bull appointed Ticktum to its Junior Team last year and placed him in the Formula Renault Eurocup. However his seventh place in the final championship standings did not earn him any further points towards his licence. He won the Macau Formula Three Grand Prix at the end of the season, but the FIA does not award licence points for the prestigious race.
Ticktum is racing in the European Formula Three championship this year, where he lies second in the standings, and has also raced in Japan’s Super Formula championship.
Whiting said drivers do not have to perform at an especially high level to gain a licence to test an F1 car. “You don’t have to achieve an awful lot to get an A licence, really.
“Literally all you have to do is complete 80% of two qualifying championships. It could be Formula Four, it could be Formula Three. Then only four points are required for performance. And then the other five you’re bound to get from your ASN. Unless you’ve done something to upset them.”
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Grounds for awarding an A Licence
Appendix L, Chapter 1 of the FIA International Sporting Code sets out what a driver must do to qualify for an A Licence.
4.3 To qualify for Grade A:
When a driver applies for a Grade A licence the following shall apply:
4.3.1 The driver must be the holder of a current FIA International Grade B licence;
4.3.2 The driver must have completed six events in Grade C Championships;
4.3.3 The driver must be at least 17 years old (the date of the birthday being binding);
4.3.4 The driver must have accumulated at least 14 points during the three-year period preceding his application (Championships and points listed in Supplement 1), including any points granted in the provisions of Articles 4.3.6 and 4.3.7;
4.3.5 The driver must have completed at least 80% of each of two full seasons of any of the Championships listed in Supplement 1;
4.3.6 Any driver who has completed two full seasons in Grade B Championships, or the FIA F3 European Championship, will be granted a one-off 5 additional points;
4.3.7 Any driver considered by his ASN to have the appropriate skills and experience may, at the discretion of the licencing ASN, be granted an additional number of points from 1 up to a maximum of 5 points
4.3.8 The driver must successfully complete a question session, conducted by his ASN, regarding the most important points of the International Sporting Code.
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