Based on Motorsport.com’s sister title Motorsport-Whole.com, Purple Bull was going to enter an extra Ferrari 488 GT3 for American driver Herta at its dwelling occasion on September 23-25, with the 22-year-old slated to affix regulars Felipe Fraga and Nick Cassidy within the AF Corse line-up.
It’s understood that Purple Bull went so far as making use of for a wildcard outing, which was permitted by the DTM. The plan was to speak Herta’s visitor outing to the general public only some days earlier than the race to trigger a shock, however Purple Bull later determined to not undergo with it and withdrew the entry.
Whereas the precise purpose for scrapping the entry shouldn’t be clear, it may have one thing to do with Purple Bull giving up on the potential of Herta becoming a member of the System 1 grid subsequent season with AlphaTauri.
The vitality drinks large had been hoping that the FIA would provide a particular dispensation for a superlicence to Herta, who has solely 32 of the 40 factors required to be eligible for a grand prix seat.
However as soon as it turned clear that the FIA wasn’t going to make an exemption for the 22-year-old, Purple Bull deserted its efforts to pay money for him – and it might need led to the group cancelling his DTM entry too.
What is thought is that the deliberate DTM outing wouldn’t have been to assist Herta land a superlicence, as visitor entries are usually not eligible for championship factors. As an alternative, it was to supply Purple Bull a terrific advertising and marketing alternative for its dwelling DTM occasion, for which it at all times has one thing particular lined up.
It wouldn’t have been the primary time Purple Bull had an A-lister from one other class as a part of its DTM driver crew. Earlier this yr, nine-time WRC champion Sebastien Loeb joined the AF Corse-run operation at Portimao, the place Cassidy was unavailable because of a conflict together with his System E commitments with Envision.
Had the plan with Herta come to fruition, it wouldn’t have been his first outing in a GT automotive. The American driver has made seven begins with BMW within the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and took a category win on his debut on the Rolex 24 at Daytona in 2019 – coincidentally with present DTM driver Philipp Eng as considered one of his teammates.
Felipe Fraga, AF Corse Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo
Picture by: Alexander Trienitz