Formula 1 not always best career option for Brazilians

F1 greats Nelson Piquet and Ayrton Senna

F1 greats Nelson Piquet and Ayrton Senna

The president of Brazil’s motor racing federation is not sure that  a career in Formula 1 is always the best option for the country’s future race drivers.

Confederacao Brasileira de Automobilismo (CBA) president Cleyton Pinteiro’s comments follow the criticism of well-known Formula 1 figures like Felipe Massa and Rubens Barrichello, who have said more should be done to support new Brazilian drivers on the road to Formula 1.

Brazil has a rich history of Formula 1 drivers, with Ayrton Senna considered perhaps the sport’s all-time great, Nelson Piquet and Emerson Fittipaldi also winning titles, Barrichello holding the record as the most experienced driver and Massa also enjoying a long and successful Ferrari career.

But with that seat now taken by Kimi Raikkonen, Massa has moved to struggling Williams for 2014, and he will be alone in flying the green, yellow and blue colours around the Formula 1 calendar this year.

That’s because burgeoning drivers like Luiz Razia and Felipe Nasr have stumbled at the final hurdle to Formula 1, as despite the strong Brazilian economy, both were priced out of the market for race seats in the past couple of years.

Pinteiro, however, insists that Formula 1 is not the be-all and end-all of top motor sport.

“Today, Brazil is a reference in almost all of the categories worldwide,” he told Globo Esporte.

“We have strong national motor sport, which pays well and gives the drivers a return for their sponsors. Luiz Razia and Felipe Nasr are not absent (from Formula 1) because they lack talent. Formula 1 is not always the best option,” Pinteiro argues.

“We have several Brazilians racing in several global categories, which unfortunately is not properly recognised.

“Do a search for who is the current vice-champion of the (German touring car series) DTM. Did you know it is Augusto Farfus? A Brazilian won the Indianapolis 500 and another (Brazilian) driver fought for the (2013 Indycar) championship until the very last race,” he added.

“The world of motor sport is not limited to Formula 1,” Pinteiro insisted. (GMM)

Content on by: staff & contributors, Reuters syndication, GMM service, Getty Images, Formula 1 teams, sponsors & organisations.

  • the fan

    with F1 becoming a sport for those who can only secure money and Brazil not having the richest of people, it would be really hard for anyone to enter Formula 1 now.

  • stoner

    Perhaps Brazil could tackle some greater issues …. like poverty, corruption, proper sewers, healthcare, roaming packs of wild monkeys…

    F1 needs a budget cap or something to stop this paydriver fiasco.

    Apart from mercedes, redbull and mclaren, it would appear that all other teams have at least one driver who brings in more money than their salaries.