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FIA "quite confident" of Saudi readiness despite "element of worry"

FIA "quite confident" of Saudi readiness despite "element of worry"

F1 News

FIA "quite confident" of Saudi readiness despite "element of worry"

FIA "quite confident" of Saudi readiness despite "element of worry"
Ian Parkes & Ewan Gale

FIA race director Michael Masi has conceded there is an "element of worry" over construction progress ahead of the inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix but revealed he was "quite confident" work would be finished on time.

F1 will head to Jeddah for the penultimate race of the season where this year's pulsating title battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton could be decided.

Images across social media have indicated there is still work to be done just four weeks before the sport arrives for the first time, sparking concerns.

"I was there a couple of weeks ago and obviously, there is a lot going on there," explained Masi.

"There is a huge amount of work happening concurrently but the FIA and F1 are getting daily updates of where things are at.

"It is progressing very very quickly from when I was last there. There is a lot to do, there is nothing to deny there. I think everyone will acknowledge there is a lot to do but still confident of the race going ahead, no problems.

"I think there is always an element of worrying with everything but I am quite confident.

"Having been involved in Korea in 2010 which was the last one that was talked about, I think India was talked about, both of those went off no problems at all and I am quite confident that Saudi will be exactly the same."

Saudi track work "first class"

As with all circuits on the F1 calendar, the circuit must gain its FIA grade one permit which is given after taking into account variables such as circuit facilities and safety infrastructure.

Asked what was needed to ensure the race could go ahead, Masi replied: "Not to sound stupid but a track, the safety installations are a part of it, pit building, race control.

"Effectively, if you take it back to its core element, everything that is track and safety-related are the core elements.

From the FIA perspective, they are all the critical things. Having discussed it in detail with the promotor, I have got no concerns from that perspective."

"They will comply with every safety requirement, I am very confident of that, very confident.

"I am very very hopeful and confident we won't get anywhere near that point.

"Having seen the progress and everything that is being used, put up and erected between [Hermann] Tilke being there, very experienced contractors, everyone we normally use is there in force and are doing a fantastic job.

"The areas that are complete, the quality of work is fantastic, is first class."

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