F1 »

Berger: Too many junior series

Gerhard Berger says the single-seater ladder needs to be reformed to ensure the best drivers are able to shine
Former F1 racer Gerhard Berger insists that something needs to be done to help the cream of young drivers to rise to the top, with the Austrian believing there are currently too many junior formulae for aspiring racers of the future to consider.

Berger, recently appointed as the president of the FIA's Single Seater Commission, was speaking in an interview with the FIA's own InMotion magazine during a discussion about the current state of play in single-seater competition.

As things stand, drivers can try and make it to F1 through a range of different series – such as Formula Renault, Formula 3, Formula Renault 3.5 and GP2 – and Berger said there was too much choice, which was making it difficult to unearth the true talent there is.

“I find that the pyramid at the moment is very loose,” he said. “There are too many championships out there and attention between them is split too much. People are complaining that the best drivers are now all spread out. You can't look at the British Formula 3 Championship, for example, and say, 'He is certain to get to Formula 1'.

“These days the best drivers are all over the place: one in Formula 3, one in GP3, one in Formula Renault and one in Formula Abarth. The system no longer does what it is supposed to do, which is to give a highly talented driver a CV he can use to progress to Formula 1.

“I went through the system myself and I have seen it for 30 years now. I am sure that I can bring something to the sport, because of the contacts I have made during my career, and maybe having the right strengths to help sort out what is required.”

Berger insisted that his priority was to resolve some of the issues that are currently in place with Formula 3, although he conceded that work was needed at all levels.

“The most urgent thing is to sort out Formula 3,” he said. “For me this has always been the most important class for young drivers. That is where you can really see, for the first time, how much talent someone has. Nowadays there are so many championships, even inside Formula 3 itself. There are national championships holding races outside their own countries and each series has different regulations. Some countries have championships that are not very strong, with only eight or ten cars, and others have A, B and C classes and so on. You have different engine rules as well. It's not Formula 3 as we knew it.

“It's a similar problem at the next level up, with Formula 2, GP2 and Formula Renault 3.5,” he says. “It is not as bad a problem as with Formula 3, but we need to study what is the best solution there and concentrate things more. You don't want to dictate a new formula, you simply want to create a better formula, so the question is what does that mean?

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
19.04.2012- Norbert Haug (GER), Mercedes Motorsport chief and Gerard Berger
24.05.2012- Free Practice 1, Gerhard Berger, Scuderia Toro Rosso
23.05.2012- Gerard Berger, Scuderia Toro Rosso
Jo Bauer (GER) FIA Delegate.
Jo Bauer (GER) FIA Delegate.
16.04.2017 - Race, Nikki Lauda (AU), Mercedes and Gerard Berger (AUT)
06.04.2017 - Mika Salo (FIN), FIA Steward
06.04.2017 - FIA, chinese and F1 flags
26.03.2017 - Race, Jean Todt (FRA), President FIA
26.03.2017 - Race, Jean Todt (FRA), President FIA
26.03.2017 - Race, Jean Todt (FRA), President FIA
26.03.2017 - Race, Bernd Maylander (GER) FIA Safety Car Driver
26.03.2017 - Race, Bernd Maylander (GER) FIA Safety Car Driver
24.03.2017 - Robert Fernley (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team Deputy Team Principal and Jean Todt (FRA), President FIA
24.03.2017 - (L-R) Alain Prost (FRA) Renault Sport F1 Team Special Advisor, Jean Todt (FRA), President FIA and Jerome Stoll (FRA) Renault Sport F1 President
24.03.2017 - (L-R) Jerome Stoll (FRA) Renault Sport F1 President, Alain Prost (FRA) Renault Sport F1 Team Special Advisor and Jean Todt (FRA), President FIA
Derek Warwick (GBR) FIA Steward and Charlie Whiting (GBR) FIA Delegate with other FIA delegates.
27.11.2016 - Race, Chalerm Yoovidhya, Red Bull Racing and Gerard Berger (AUT)

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


August 15, 2012 2:18 AM
Last Edited 365 days ago

Have they ever considered running a second division in F1 (like in football). That way they could get rid of HRT and Marrusia from the Div 1 grid and at the same time provide an exciting Second Division (racing on the same weekends). It would hopefully encourage more lower budget operations into the glamour of F1, and provide an opportunity for younger drivers to get F1 experience earlier.


August 16, 2012 5:42 PM

In all junior(feeder)series drivers are paying for their seats one way or another. The teams in those series are there as businesses to make a profit or they are not there long. If a number of drivers can afford to stay in a feeder series for a number of years what's wrong with that? They help keep a number of teams viable and provide a benchmark for the up-and-comers.

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.