Indy Racing League driver Danica Patrick has done an about face. Just a few days after telling everyone how happy she is in the IRL, she now says she’d consider jumping to Formula One. Patrick has been targeted as one of four possible drivers for a new U.S.-based F1 team that was launched today.
Meanwhile, former open-wheel driver Mario Andretti said if any IRL driver should be considered for a jump to F1, considered by many to be the premiere level of open-wheel racing, it should be his grandson, Marco.
Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson unveiled their plans today in Charlotte, N.C. for a team to be called USF1, and say they are committed to hiring two American drivers. They listed their top targets, including Patrick, 22-year-old Marco Andretti, former F1 driver Scott Speed and NASCAR’s Kyle Busch. Windsor and Anderson are committed to launching an F1 team for the 2010 season. Patrick and Marco Andretti, who are teammates on Andretti Green Racing, both have contracts that expire at the end of the 2009 season.
The idea of Danica or one of the good ole boys mixing it up with the high-brow F1 paddock certainly would boost interest in the U.S., and might even push interest in bringing a race back to the Brickyard. Of course, it would have to make financial sense for IMS boss Tony George.