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F1 2022

F1 team bosses weigh in on concerns about weekend format

Several of Formula 1's team principals have had their say on the current weekend schedule, with the altered format having come in for criticism from some of the drivers.

FIA team bosses press conference Imola
To news overview © FIA

With Formula 1 having tweaked its weekend format for 2022, ostensibly with the intent of shortening a Grand Prix event from four days to three, the changes have been met with some mutterings of discontent from the drivers.

FIA media commitments have been moved from Thursday to Friday, which was supposed to shorten the proceedings for the drivers, but many have pointed out that they are still required at the circuit on Thursdays for team preparations and internal media and sponsor commitments.

Speaking at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, reigning World Champion Max Verstappen was particularly vocal in his criticisms. As explained by RacingNews365.com over the Imola weekend, it is understood that a letter from the Grand Prix Drivers' Association has been sent to F1 and the FIA, with the weekend format a topic of contention within.

Several of the team bosses have had their say on the matter, with most agreeing that the situation could be handled better.

Binotto: Ferrari are open to discussion

"Obviously, when you've got such a change, I think you need to go through the experience and judge it after few appointments, and a few events," Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto told media, including RacingNews365.com, at Imola.

"I think we can try to collect the feedback and together with FIA, F1, [and the] F1 Commission, we can certainly try to discuss and try to review if there is anything that we can do to improve.

"But I think it doesn't mean that implies that we need to change. I think it's only a matter that, at first, we need to try to collect information, collect experience."

With Formula 1 eyeing a record-breaking 23 race calendar once the cancelled Russian Grand Prix is replaced, Binotto says that a key target has been achieved.

"If you look at the overall schedule of the calendar, a number of races, I think it's important still to try to reduce the length of the weekend and that was the attempt," he explained.

"I think that was an important attempt, if I look at the mechanics, certainly they are resting more today. And for us, that's a key element. But certainly, open to discussion."

Is everyone in agreement?

Haas' team boss Guenther Steiner believes that an important first step has been taken, but that there is still room for improvements.

"As I always say, you have to do it and then see what you can do better," he said.

"I think some things are better, some things maybe are not as good, but I think it needs a bit of discussion, and then maybe we have to readjust it.

"But in general, I think it's not a bad thing what we are doing, but we need to look into how we can make it even better and to make the savings in our time work for everybody even better"

AlphaTauri's Franz Tost was more dismissive of the discontent from the drivers, saying his will be at the race track as required.

"What the media wants: to have them here on Wednesday, Tuesday, Thursday, whatever, no problem, just let us know," he commented. "[The] drivers will be here."

Newer team bosses have their say

Williams' Jost Capito and Aston Martin's Mike Krack have had less experience than their peers at dealing with the two different weekend formats, but both said they are open to further discussions.

"We said we should do it a couple of more races, and then discuss together and analyse what's better, what's worse," Capito said.

"And then yeah, make changes if we think we can do better."

Krack agreed with Capito, admitting that he couldn't compare to the previous schedule, having only begun working with Aston Martin ahead of the 2022 season.

"It's never easy to make a schedule that suits everybody, so I think we all pay to do a job and everybody tries as best as he can to accommodate," he added.

"So, as [Capito] said, we wait a couple of races and adjust when needed. But yeah, I think it's a secondary priority."

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