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Masi's replacement sets out clear rule for track limits

After plenty of debate around the topic in 2021, one of F1's new Race Directors has moved to clarify the rules regarding track limits.

New Formula 1 Race Director Niels Wittich has presented a simple rule for track limits at the Bahrain Grand Prix. Wittich is one of two new Race Directors for 2022, next to Eduardo Freitas, with the pair set to share responsibilities over the course of the season, aided by returning advisor Herbie Blash and a Virtual Race Control Room . The change for this weekend's event in Sakhir - Wittich's first in charge - comes after a 2021 campaign featuring endless confusion over track limits, which changed from track to track and corner to corner, and sometimes even session to session. At last year's Bahrain Grand Prix, for example, drivers had lap times deleted in qualifying for running wide at Turn 4, but the same rule did not apply for the race. These differences came under the spotlight when Max Verstappen overtook Lewis Hamilton off-track on race day, with the Dutchman subsequently handing the place back.

The white lines mark the track edges

Ahead of the season opener, Wittich has set out clear guidelines for the F1 field to follow throughout the weekend. "In accordance with the provisions of Article 33.3, the white lines define the track edges," read a line in Wittich's Race Director notes. Article 33.3 of the F1 Sporting Regulations states: "Drivers must make every reasonable effort to use the track at all times and may not leave the track without a justifiable reason. "Drivers will be judged to have left the track if no part of the car remains in contact with it and, for the avoidance of doubt, any white lines defining the track edges are considered to be part of the track but the kerbs are not." Friday's first practice session in Bahrain gets underway at 15:00 local time (12:00 GMT) and can be followed in the RacingNews365.com live blog .

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