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Wittich part of FIA's plans to train upcoming officials

Niels Wittich is set to remain as Formula 1 Race Director for a second season, while the FIA plans to train next generation of race directors and stewards to ensure greater consistency and continuity in these specialised roles.

Niels Wittich
To news overview © XPB Images

Niels Wittich, who will remain as a F1 Race Director for 2023, will be part of the FIA's plan to train upcoming officials for roles in Race Direction and Stewarding.

Speaking to media about the future of the position, FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem confirmed that the governing body was working on a process to train the next generation of officials.

"I have a team now who is going through a proper process and training for stewarding and for race directors," he told media at the Dakar 2022 event.

"You cannot just have one race director and rely on them, I see it that we should prepare the second row. We cannot rely [solely on one person] in this biggest discipline that we have, or any other discipline.

"What if something happened? If we are going to sustain motorsport, we have to be ready with training."

Ben Sulayem 'big believer' that stewarding and race direction can improve

The governing body has implemented a Race Direction Development Programme for the future, which aims to attract candidates from National Sporting Authorities (ASNs).

An FIA spokesman said: “The FIA Race Direction Development Programme not only seeks to improve our Race Direction operation but also to create a pathway where we can attract candidates from the geographic spread of our entire FIA membership.

“This will enable us to build a pool of talent which we can draw on to work in Race Direction operations and Stewarding at events across the FIA motorsport portfolio. As the current Formula 1 Race Director, Niels Wittich would be part of this pool.”

Ben Sulayem believes that the consultation approach from the FIA should yield more talent for these specialised positions within motorsport.

He continued: "I am a big believer that somewhere in the world there can be better race directors or better stewards.

"Now we are reaching out to the ASNs (National Sporting Authorities), and we are asking them to send us people for the training.

"We have a proper team now for the training that would go with the competency framework."

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