Why There is a 1% Chance of Seeing a NASCAR Driver in Haas F1

Since Haas F1 was given permission to join Formula 1 in April starting in 2015 (Later delayed to 2016), there has been constant speculation and rumor that Haas F1 is going to hire a current NASCAR driver, specifically one Danica Patrick, to drive one of their two cars in Formula 1.

The problem with that is that it’s a lot like if Tony Romo were to jump ship from the Dallas Cowboys to Manchester United FC.

It would be almost impossible for Danica to try and run F1. She has a sponsor, yes. But, even though some reporters would tell you otherwise, she has never driven anything quite like a Formula car. It is radically different from her former Andretti Green IndyCars under the surface. And even if this is ignored, remember that Formula 1 has all road courses- which Danica typically struggled at during her IndyCar career.

And this isn’t just another “screw Danica” article. The reality is that there are problems with every driver in NASCAR looking to make the switch. Most drivers came up on dirt ovals, while all F1 drivers come up running pavement road courses. Most drivers are simply too old. Danica, at 32, would easily be the oldest rookie in the field, and one of the older drivers in the field, period. Most drivers also are simply too big. This doesn’t mean at all that most are fatties, but Formula 1 drivers need to be much thinner, to the point where some drivers are eating less than the stereotypical model. And why would Haas get a driver with all of these disadvantages when he could get an experienced foreign driver while attempting to develop an American driver?

The reality is, in order to successfully make the switch to Formula 1 from NASCAR, something that has never been done, you’d need a once in a decade driver to agree to make the switch within about 5 years of being in NASCAR. After that, they aren’t making the switch. Over the past 25 years, only three drivers jump out to me as being that good: Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, and Kyle Busch (Although in his case it’s more in that his driving style would fit in perfectly in Formula 1).

If it were to happen, I’d be shocked and excited. But the reality is that it just isn’t going to happen in spite of how the media attempts to spin the news. Somehow Haas saying, “I think she would. I think she would. She would bring an awful lot of viewership. I think it would be great for America. I think she would be a great candidate. Whether that’s going to happen or not that’s, that’s, that’s … you know I think that’s kind of a long shot there, too,” turned into “At the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal last weekend, Haas said Patrick would be considered as a driver for the team.”

The reality is that Haas F1, when it starts out in 2016, will probably have a rookie and veteran who are both not American. Essentially, their job will be to develop the car until the right American comes along. Until then, it’s a waste of time pulling names out of a hat.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com


  1. Danica Patrick was a femnazi publicity stunt, no doubt paid for and/or backed by NOW and the federal Government to get women into racing. It has FAILED! She hasn’t won even come CLOSE to wining a race. Let’s try some other dumb stunt to get women into racing. This one sure has FAILED!

  2. Danica’s improvement:

    In 2013, after 15 races, Patrick had accumulated 277 championships points. In 2014, also after 15 races, she has 273 points.

    In 2013, after 15 races, Patrick was ranked 27th. In 2014, after 15 races, Patrick is ranked 28th.

  3. Simply put, Danica is in NASCAR and would not go to F1 no matter what the circumstances. She wants to stay in NASCAR and with a few more seasons under her belt, be winning some races there. Maybe not this year, but based on the improvement this year, she could well win a couple next year.


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