Red Bull says it is “frustrating” Formula 1’s superlicence points regulations have ruled European Formula 3 title hopeful Dan Ticktum out of a young driver test with the team.  

The Milton Keynes-based outfit wanted to run Ticktum in the post-Hungarian Grand Prix two-day test but has encountered a sticking point with F1’s superlicence criteria, as the Briton is currently 14 points short of receiving an International A licence that allows for participation in F1 testing. 

Ticktum is a contender for this year’s Euro F3 title and lies fourth in the championship standings, 13 points adrift of current points leader and Ferrari protege Marcus Armstrong.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner believes success at races such as the F3 Macau Grand Prix - which Ticktum won last year - should count towards a superlicence. 

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“It’s a little bit frustrating that there are drivers with lesser achievements that are able to be driving there,” Horner told Sky Sports F1. 

“Dan won Macau, which is a big race in Formula 3, but it doesn’t register, it doesn’t qualify for any points. There’s a few things that need to be looked at there I think.”

Ticktum currently has just two superlicence points from his British F4 campaign in 2015, before he spent a year on the sidelines in 2016 having received a ban for overtaking a number of cars under a Safety Car and deliberately colliding with a rival during a race in the series at Silverstone.  

Those points are due to expire at the end of 2018, meaning that even if the Red Bull junior was to win this year’s Euro F3 title he would still require a further 10 points to meet the 40 needed to race in F1. 

Instead, Red Bull will once again field simulator and sportscar driver Jake Dennis at the Hungaroring, after he took part in the first in-season test at Barcelona in May. 

“We’re giving another young British driver a chance in Jake Dennis, who did a great job for us in Barcelona. So it’s good to give him another opportunity,” Horner added. 

When asked if either driver is in the frame for a Toro Rosso seat for 2019, Horner replied: “It’s still a long way to go. I think Jake is firmly going for a different route but he just correlates the work he is doing for us on the simulator very well. 

“For Dan his main focus now has to be on trying to win that Formula 3 championship.”

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