Fittipaldi will prioritise his RLL programme subsequent yr, however he nonetheless has the scope to retain his hyperlinks with Haas, for whom he competed within the final two races of the 2020 season as alternative for the injured Romain Grosjean.
With the IndyCar season ending on 15 September, he’ll doubtlessly be free for the ultimate seven races of the F1 calendar, whereas additionally having some spare weekends earlier within the yr.
With 24 occasions on subsequent yr’s F1 schedule many groups are splitting the reserve function, with Haas now doubtlessly having the choice to have Ferrari junior Oliver Bearman available as properly.
“We now have to determine that one out,” mentioned group boss Guenther Steiner when requested about Fittipaldi. “I used to be talking with Fred [Vasseur] about what they’re doing with reserve drivers for subsequent yr, however we’ve not come to a conclusion.
“I don’t suppose we’ll lose him utterly. As I mentioned, we regarded into it, what is feasible, what isn’t. We all know the calendars. We had a chat at the moment about it.
“Additionally, how a lot testing, as a result of in IndyCars they do extra testing than we do right here, how a lot is concerned in that one. Pietro is a part of the household and if you do not have him round you miss one thing.”
Picture by: Michael Potts / Motorsport Images
Pietro Fittipaldi, Haas VF-22
Fittipaldi is eager to retain his F1 hyperlinks regardless of switching his focus to the USA.
“I believe it could be wonderful to proceed with Haas,” he informed Autosport. “As a result of first, we have been collectively for thus lengthy. It might be happening to the sixth season.
“And we at all times do a very good job collectively within the testing duties, and making an attempt to work on growing the automotive. I like doing that work for the group.
“And for me as a driver it’s extremely helpful as properly. As a result of yearly expertise modifications, and it is helpful info that may assist me in any sequence that I am racing in.
“Clearly Guenther is aware of that the precedence and the main focus is 100% IndyCar. However that is what we’re wanting into now, to see what the probabilities are to proceed as reserve and proceed doing the testing duties for the group. So we’ll know quickly, however the intention is there.”
Fittipaldi confirmed that the final a part of the F1 season is his finest probability to be out there on a constant foundation.
“As a result of the IndyCar season ends early in September, from then till the tip of the yr, it is seven F1 races. Already there you might have a 3rd of the season. After which there’s some races which most likely can be simpler, just like the Miami GP, if I am the US.
“And having the ability to proceed performing some testing duties, I believe that will be essential. So we’re within the technique of taking a look at that. However I believe the intention is there to have the ability to do one thing.
“There isn’t any rush to do it, and I do not see a motive why it would not be attainable. However I have to double examine with the group, Rahal, and make it possible for nothing clashes, and that they are snug with me doing it as properly.”
Requested if he expects to do the Abu Dhabi rookie take a look at subsequent month Fittipaldi mentioned: “It relies upon, if I proceed with the group, then for positive. I believe the Abu Dhabi take a look at can be like my first ’24 responsibility. So I believe we have simply bought to get the whole lot set in stone, after which go on from there.”
In the meantime Bearman acknowledged that Fittipaldi’s absence creates a possible alternative.
“Clearly, it is nice information for Pietro to get a full-time drive,” he mentioned. “My main focus is F2, and it’ll proceed to be F2. However something on high of that will clearly be a bonus.”