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GP Week : Issue 182
F1 >>> NEWS EDITOR: Kate Walker firstname.lastname@example.org MOTOGP EDITOR: Michael Scott F1 NEWS EDITOR Abhishek Takle TECHNICAL EDITOR Paolo Filisetti RACE EDITOR Trent Price CONTRIBUTING EDITOR Leigh O'Gorman BUSINESS EDITOR Caroline Reid PRODUCTION ARTIST Cedric Dufour PHOTOGRAPHY Sutton Motorsport Images www.sutton-images.com Keith Sutton email@example.com: Mark Sutton, Patrik Lundin, Dirk Klynsmith, Daniel Kalisz PUBLISHER Chris Lambden firstname.lastname@example.org PUBLISHED BY: Grand Prix Week Ltd 61 Watling Street, Towcester Northants NN12 6AG United Kingdom ADVERTISING: Richard Partridge email@example.com Ph: + 44 1273 232 566 Mob: + 44 7771 567 644 Mark Sutton firstname.lastname@example.org SE Asia, Australasia GPWEEK (Australia) email@example.com .com WEEK TESTING TIMES FOR THE F1 PADDOCK Formula One teams have voted against the return of in-season testing for 2014 at a meeting over the Spanish Grand Prix weekend, meaning teams and their regular race drivers will not be able to get any extra running above and beyond the annual pre-season tests. Long gone are the days when teams could hold an unlimited amount of test sessions to develop their cars, with some of the bigger outfits running test drivers at various circuits, even as a grand prix was taking place. It was a system that required full test crews in addition to race crews, and led to costs spiraling out of control. As a result, in 2008 the FIA restricted teams to 30,000 kilometers of testing with a number of officially sanctioned mid-season tests taking place in addition to the pre-season sessions. In 2009, testing restrictions were tightened fur ther still, and in-season testing was banned altogether. Last year, however, an FIA-sanctioned in-season test took place at Ferrari’s Mugello Circuit before the European leg of the season. This ‘extra’ test did not give the teams additional track time, as it replaced one of what had been four pre-season test weeks. For 2013, teams decided to run just three tests ahead of the season with no in-season running scheduled. However, Ferrari – who also own the Fiorano Circuit in their hometown of Maranello – have long been pressing for a return to in-season testing in some form. At the meeting held in the Barcelona paddock, Ferrari voted for the return of in-season testing, backed only by those teams who will be – or who are believed to be – running Ferrari engines in 2014. Traditional Ferrari rivals McLaren oppose the return of in-season testing, which managing director Jonathan Neale believes is the relic of another era. “Over the years teams have rightly developed the technology and the cost saving methods that go with moving away from dependence on track testing and a reliance more on desktop simulation and sometimes [driver-in- the-loop] simulators,” Neale said. “By all means a simulator is a very valuable tool but there is a whole bevy of other simulations that go with it that help you work out what is happening on the circuit. “Formula One is at the moment just asking itself again [about a return to track testing] and there are some quarters pushing ver y hard for the reintroduction of track testing. I find that slightly curious because there were very good reasons for us, pre-the financial crisis and Lehmann Brothers, to impose some cost constraints to stabilise the sport and make sure it was in good health for new teams coming along.” Fernando Alonso puts in some miles during Formula One Testing, Mugello, Day Three, May 2012. 6 GPWEEK.com // 6 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: