In season testing to return?

Brogan

🦶 Leg end
Staff Member
The media is reporting that the teams are close to agreeing a deal for the return of in season testing.

Personally I think this is great news.

Although there will be those who say the teams at the back of the grid will be even more disadvantaged now due to the cost.
But without expensive simulators, they have no way currently of testing so at least this gives them a chance.

It's not as great as it sounds though:
Although the final details still need to be sorted, teams are close to approving the idea of a single three-day test that will take place before the start of the European season.

No venue has been chosen for the test, but one possibility being looked at is Mugello.

In a bid to keep costs down for teams, the plan is for them to cut back on pre-season days in exchange for the new test. Instead of the current 15 days they have, teams will instead have 12 days of running ahead of the 2012 campaign.

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/93325
 

Quintessentially

-
Contributor
Good news I say. Mid season testing was always good as it gave teams better design direction thus reducing costs and wastage. It was just over exploited by the top teams with unlimited budgets but I think together with the resource restriction agreement, FIA is better placed to control things this time around.
 

RickD

Pole Sitter
Sounds like a good descision to me, it will definitely be good for those teams that are slightly later with their cars and miss the beginning of winter testing, it now means that not all of the days are lost.

I will also mean closer racing when they get back to Europe and not as much fumbling in the dark with regards to updates..
 

sushifiesta

Champion Elect
Contributor
I don't like the sound of this really, the teams have very little time to build and develop their new cars during the off-season as it is. Also, when he was in with the five live guys during free practice Sam Michael was talking about bringing back in-season testing and how really they could probably only manage to do one test for a day at two at a track where they've just raced. There were various reasons he gave that changed my opinion about it slightly, for example the large number of races now means the teams are already stretched and resource restrictions means the teams can no longer affort to have mechanics etc. just for testing, so everything would have to be done by the already overworked race team.

Also, I can't see how one group test mid-season for all the teams is really going to help anyone. Young drivers need more opportunities some how, so it might help in this regard, but in terms of car updates all the teams are working to different schedules and major updates come at different times. Wouldn't it be better, then, to allow the teams three days of track testing in-season whenever they like, wherever they like? I guess this might be more expensive though and then you go back to Sam Michael's comments about resource restrictions etc.
 

Road of Bones

MTC Mole
Contributor
Mugello is no where near Ferraris home base is it?
Mugello is owned by Ferrari - I believe they used to run Celebratory exhibitions there during the "Red Years"!

To my mind, the in-season testing ban was designed purely to prevent Ferrari running Badoer & Gene every week around their private track of Fiorano - as the only F1 team with their own test-track, it gave them a massive advantage (particularly during the tyre wars) as they were able to work with Bridgestone to tailor the cars & tyres to one another to their heart's content. I believe that Ferrari's apparent failure to get truly competitve until mid-season recently can be laid at this particular door.
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
At the risk of going off-topic, any other team could have bought their own test track at any point in the last 60 years.

We must assume that the venue will be agreed by all the teams, naturally, and if anyone has concerns about Mugello they can suggest an alternative within FOTA, or not bother going.
 

HammydiRestarules

Di Resta fan :).
Contributor
I'd only support in season testing if it was a young driver coming into do the test and not the main two drivers for each team. Or else i wouldn't support in season testing coming back.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
At the risk of going off-topic, any other team could have bought their own test track at any point in the last 60 years.

You're forgetting about the secret underground track near the sleepy hamlet of Woking G. Although based on this year's car they haven't used it very well...
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
If I remember rightly McLaren bought Lydden, near Dover, with the intention of turning it into an F1 test track. Unfortunately intention was all it ever was.
 

Sarinaide

Banned
What is the real issue with in season testing, some comments seem to suggest that only Ferrari will be happy with it, or it is a Ferrari pressed issue, I would hardly believe that many would object to its return.

From a Ferrari perspective bringing back in season testing is a very helpful addition, it will allow acadamy drivers the chance to hone skills, it will also provide helpfull R&D data without testing in race situations. In my opinion ever since Schumacher started rattling off championships with Irvine and Barrichello following behind, the rules have been changed so much that Ferrari have lost all the former abilities to on merit build and design something vastly better than the opposition. While it makes for racing, it has curtailed Ferrari's right to spend well earned money to make a machine that is reminiscent of the reputation. You only need to google Ferrari and Ferrari engines (f1 context) to see what legacy the team has on the sport, all is earned.
 

Road of Bones

MTC Mole
Contributor
For someone without rosso corsa-tinted spectacles however, the Schumacher/Ferrari domination was a significantly less-enthralling proposition, Sarinaide. We have had a period of exquisite competitiveness since, given that the bigger teams can no longer test & spend their way out of trouble. Ok - we've had half a season of Red Bull domination, but the bare results have belied the closeness of the on-track competition. Even in the last "dominant" season of 2009, the Brawns had much less daylight between themselves and their pursuers.

I, for one, would cheerfully never see in-season testing again, if F1 remains as fiercely-contested as it has been for the last few years. God forbid we should return to the monotonous predictability of 2000-2004 (2003 aside, of course - but that's for a different thread)...
 

sushifiesta

Champion Elect
Contributor
Remember we are only talking about three days here, not unlimited testing, so Ferrari would't get an advantage by having more resources and a test track. In fact, the overall testing time won't change at all if what's in the autosport article comes in to place.
 

Sarinaide

Banned
Well I still don't see why if team x can produce more output on similar spec engine to team y, why x should not be able to use such. We have also seen that the midfield teams have been able to aquire better engines, chassis and gearboxes. Essentially the difference comes down to designers piecing the puzzle together.
 

Road of Bones

MTC Mole
Contributor
Remember we are only talking about three days here, not unlimited testing, so Ferrari would't get an advantage by having more resources and a test track. In fact, the overall testing time won't change it all if what's in the autosport article comes in to place.
Fair point sushi :thumbsup:

I suppose if it's a young-driver test, conducted mid-season, then perhaps it's not such a bad thing. It would rather limit the opportunity for car development, given that the young drivers would be hampered by relative unfamiliarity with the equipment.
 

sushifiesta

Champion Elect
Contributor
I think this is more down to stricter technical regulations and reliability rules. I would like to see a bit more freedom in this regard but I don't think unlimited spending is faesible any more.
 
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