Heikki Kovalainen has revealed that he has spoken to multiple teams in an attempt to make a return to Formula One.
The Finnish driver raced for Caterham between 2010 and 2012, but he was dropped by the British team in favor of two pay drivers – Charles Pic and Giedo van der Garde – in order to aid their finances.
Despite refusing to become a pay driver, Kovalainen has been linked with a return to his old team after appearing in the Caterham garage last weekend, and he did admit to Autosport that he was missing the sport.
“I love F1. I really enjoyed my time here and would enjoy being here today [in Malaysia].
“I already had a few discussions with different teams.”
Kovalainen enjoyed some success in the sport prior to his Caterham switch, racing for Renault and McLaren between 2007 and 2009. However, he failed to match Lewis Hamilton whilst with the Woking-based team, taking just a single victory at the 2008 Hungarian Grand Prix.
His decision to return could be largely down to a potential sponsorship deal. Kovalainen may have been forced between choosing to stick to his principles or make a return to Formula One, but whether or not it will be in the current season remains to be confirmed.
Beta Motorcycles joins SuperMotocross in 2024, Benny Bloss named first factory rider
Benny Bloss will race for the factory Beta Motorcycles team in 2024 as that manufacturer joins SuperMotocross as the ninth brand to compete in the series. Beta Motorcycles will make their debut in the Monster Energy Supercross opener at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California in January.
“The wait is over and we can finally share everything we have been working towards,” said Carlen Gardner, Race Team Manager in a press release. “It has been a great experience being a part of this development and seeing the progression. The only missing part was finding a rider that would mesh well with our Beta Family.
“After a one phone call with Benny, we knew it would be a good fit for him, and for us. We are happy to have him on board for the next two years and can’t wait to see everyone at Anaheim in January.”
Bloss has a pair of top-10 rankings in the division with a sixth-place finish in the Pro Motocross Championship in 2016 and a seventh in 2018. His best Supercross season ended 15th in the standings in 2018.
“I’m extremely excited to join the Beta Factory Racing team,” Bloss said. “It’s cool to see a brand with such a rich history in off-road racing to come into the US Supercross and Motocross space. I know this team will be capable of great things as we build and go racing in 2024.”
Bloss is currently 22nd in the SuperMotocross rankings and has not raced in the first two rounds of the Motocross season.
Testing for Beta Motorcycles is scheduled to begin in August and the team expects to announce a second rider at that time.
The family-owned brand adds to the international flare of the sport. The company was founded in Florence, Italy in 1905 as Società Giuseppe Bianchi as they built handmade bicycles, The transition to motorcycle production in the late 1940s.
Beta Motorcycles competed and won in motocross competition in the late 1970s and early 1980s with Jim Pomeroy and other riders.