Published On: Fri, Mar 2nd, 2018

F1 testing: Was week one a waste of time? Fans' verdicts

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Barcelona this week hosted the first of only two four-day Formula 1 pre-season tests before the opening round in Melbourne on March 25 – but it was far from productive.

The weather ensured even less testing time than usual for the teams. Low track temperatures, heavy rain and some snow reduced the opportunities to do meaningful running and the track was empty for long periods.

A mooted extra test day did not happen because the required unanimous support from the 10 teams was not achieved.

Fans on the Autosport Forums debated what, if anything, could have been done differently:

Raest: How much more expensive would it be to fly to Bahrain or Abu Dhabi compared to Barcelona? It’s the only testing session they have prior to Australia, surely they could afford to spend a bit more and maximise returns…

hahostolze: Yes moving the test to a different place would be expensive and logistically difficult, but surely spending all that money on a test that doesn’t tell you much about your car is an even bigger waste of money?

Seanspeed: It’s not just flying people, it’s flying all the equipment and everything, too. I imagine the costs aren’t minor.

Noikeee: It was a giant anomaly, it never snows at the track.

CoolBreeze: Pre-season tests should be fully sponsored by the FIA. They should pick a really nice warm country and then sponsor the teams to move all equipment and test there.

Andy35: The FIA needs to bring an entire continent into it by testing in South Africa and then doing the first race there.

AustinF1: Even though getting snow or even rain isn’t usually a problem in Barcelona, how about just allowing for at least one bad weather day? When scheduling the test, simply tell the teams they’ll be allowed to do four days of testing over a specified five or six-day span.

clarkma5: Quite disappointing teams couldn’t come together to move the test day. I know a couple of teams had the track booked but there were enough free days to shuffle things around.

It seems a couple of teams decided to save themselves the trouble of rescheduling instead of helping the whole sport. I’m a little tired of that attitude in F1.

Quickshifter: This whole 100% unanimity requirement for even simple things like shifting a lost test day indicates what is wrong with F1. Teams have way too much say in the running of the sport. I hope it changes from 2021.

pdac: There should be a hard timetable and if something untoward happens to disrupt it, so be it. You can’t just allow the ones that have flexibility to throw away agreements.

Join the debate on the Autosport Forums

SCUDmissile: Why can’t teams test separately again? Let them test wherever they want but give them a limit of how many 9-5 days of running.

Seanspeed: Parity. So bigger teams can’t go testing at ideal locations, getting better information and more running than smaller teams stuck in Europe with more problems.

Burai: Since the rules were changed that tests need to have the same safety and medical facilities as a race, the cost has skyrocketed.

It makes far more sense for Force India to chip in one tenth of the cost and ship cars and personnel out than it does for them to swallow 100% of the cost to use Silverstone.

It also means that the FIA, Pirelli, FOM, broadcasters, etc. don’t need staff in five different places at once.

ArrowsLivery: I don’t think testing is that big of a deal anymore. These teams all have supercomputers which do all the heavy lifting with regards to set-ups and simulations. The tests are just to make sure there isn’t any mistakes in fitting all the pieces of the car together and that all the correlations are in order.

amedeofelix: They are, as Gary Anderson pointed out, all imbeciles for not testing the wet tyres!

Knowlesy: The less knowledge they have of their cars the better. More snow please!



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