Will Johnny Herbert Be Flying the British Flag in NASCAR?

Mark BatemanCorrespondent IJune 30, 2009

NURBURG, GERMANY - MAY 05:  Sporting relations manager for Midland F1 Johnny Herbert of Great Britain looks on from the pit wall during practice for the European F1 Grand Prix at the Nurburgring on May 5, 2006, in Nurburg, Germany. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Johnny Herbert is one of Britain's finest racing drivers. He has competed at the highest levels of world motorsport and has a CV which would be the envy of many drivers.

He has raced in the Formula One World Championship, driving for the likes of Benetton, Lotus, and Jaguar between 1989 and 2000.

In that time, he won three races, including the 1995 British Grand Prix and made the podium seven times from 165 races. 

He has also competed in the Le Mans 24 hours, winning the event in 1991, the American Le Mans Series, in which he was a contender for the title in 2003 and, most recently, he was crowned champion of the inaugural Speedcar Series, in 2008.

But due to the global recession, Speedcar, which was based in the Middle East, has been scrapped after only its second series, leaving all its staff looking for new jobs, including Herbert.

Now the 45-year-old is considering putting together a deal to enter the NASCAR series, believing his experience of stock car racing on the tracks of places like Abu Dhabi and Bahrain in Speedcar, can be transferred to the oval tracks of NASCAR, and stand him in good stead to compete with the best in the sport.

But despite his reputation and unquestionable ability, Herbert has made it clear that any such move into NASCAR would mean him starting further down the sport's pyramid, possibly in the Nationwide Series, before eventually moving to the Sprint Cup.

Should Herbert join the ranks of NASCAR he would be one of only a handful of Brits to race in the competition and would certainly be Britain's best chance of winning races.