19 August 2013
Next six weeks crucial to Razia F1 bid
Luiz Razia has not given up on the dream of racing in F1, but admits that the pressure to find sponsorship could scupper his chances of stepping up in 2014.
Luiz Razia has admitted that what happens in the next few weeks could determine whether he abandons his dream to race in F1.
The Brazilian had been due to drive for Marussia this season but, when expected sponsorship funds failed to materialise, the Banbury-based team had little choice to but to terminate his contract, signing Jules Bianchi to partner Max Chilton in his place.
Undeterred, 2012 GP2 Series runner-up Razia insisted that he would continue to work his way back into the top flight, briefly being linked to a possible reserve role at Force India before settling into a GT drive for 2013. Still needing to bring backing to secure his place in F1, however, he admits that there has to come a point where he turns his attention elsewhere.
"F1 these days is all about the money and talent is secondary," the 24-year old told Sky Sports F1, “Unfortunately, I don't have money at the moment, so it is looking difficult to get back to it.
"We had the issue at the beginning of the year and that was the end [of F1 for 2013]. Obviously it was not easy [to accept] but, after that, I got invited to run this season in GT Open [with] the Bhai Tech McLaren and that has been a good experience - up to this point."
Revealing that his goal is still to make a professional career out of motorsport, Razia confirmed that he would continue to pursue F1 for a while longer.
"The end of August, into September, we will still try but, if I don't see any signs of sponsorship, then I will move to sportscars and do GT, Le Mans, something like that," he confirmed, "It is good to look for a drive as a professional, instead of paying all my life, [and], if August and September work out, then I will still look at [F1], but it is very difficult to find £10m nowadays. It is quite complicated."
Should his F1 ambitions not come to fruition, the Brazilian says that he will not continue to try knocking on the door by returning to the feeder series that he came close to winning last season.
"There is no incentive to go back to GP2 even if I did get a free drive, because I did such a good job last year there is no reason to go back and prove anything," he noted, no doubt wary of other series stalwarts – such as Giorgio Pantano and Luca Filippi – who also saw their F1 dreams go unfulfilled.
"There should be the step forward from GP2 to F1 but, with these kinds of budget issues, it is difficult to get promoted. For sure, I am looking for opportunities [elsewhere] - even IndyCar would be good if I got the chance - but it is all about getting the chance. If there is a good opportunity coming up I will take it for sure."
Davide Valsecchi, who beat Razia to the 2012 GP2 Series crown, is currently reserve at Lotus, but is not yet being mentioned in connection with a race seat, even amid speculation that Kimi Raikkonen could be headed to Ferrari next season. Romain Grosjean, who won the 2011 title, is team-mate to Raikkonen in the Enstone line-up.
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