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Formula 1 set for practice shake-up in 2021

Formula 1 set for practice shake-up in 2021

F1 News

Formula 1 set for practice shake-up in 2021

Formula 1 set for practice shake-up in 2021

Formula 1 is set for a shake-up to its practice format with the two Friday sessions in line to be shortened from 90-minutes to just one-hour each.

The most recent draft of the FIA sporting regulations for the 2021 F1 season detail the changes set to be made to the Friday running time, reducing the total amount of track time from 180 minutes by one hour to 120 minutes.

Article 32.1.a reads: "Two free practice sessions [P1 and P2], each lasting one hour and separated by at least two and a half hours, will take place on the second day of the event."

In the previous November draft of the sporting regulations, Friday sessions of "one-and-a-half hours" in duration were still planned.

The Saturday third practice session will remain at its previous one-hour duration, as indicated by article 32.1.b: "A further free practice session [P3], lasting one hour and starting no less than nineteen [19 - previously 18-and-a-half] after the end of P2, will take place the day before the race."

Neither F1 nor the FIA has made comment on the proposed changes outlined in the fifth issue of the sporting regulations.

At Imola this year, F1 trialled a two-day weekend format with a single practice session on Saturday preceding qualifying. This format was also unintentionally implemented at the Eifel Grand Prix as fog and clouds prevented the medical helicopter from flying and cancelled all Friday running.

The current 2022 sporting regulations indicates the one-and-a-half-hour sessions will return after a one-year absence, suggesting the change is likely a recognition of the large carryover of parts from this year to next.

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