In recent years, prior to each season, F1 teams have been accustomed to two weeks of testing, made of three days each. Unfortunately, the need to cut costs led the sport management to adopt a one week schedule for teams to adjust within. Teams thus agreed to have just a single three-days session in Bahrain in 2021, shared between their two drivers.
If the solution made total sense from a financial point of view, it however proved to be tricky in terms of the execution of operations in much less time than teams were used to. For Andreas Seidl, — McLaren Team Principal, halving the time of testing was an additional challenge, especially for those with the task to adapt to a new equipment, as it was the case for the team’s freshly signed driver Daniel Ricciardo. He said he expected Ricciardo and other drivers in new teams to have a harder time adapting.
“I won't say it's a surprise,” he said when asked by Motorsport.com.
“We know it's not just straightforward to jump from one car into another one, when you only have one and a half days of testing.”
For the German, having the time of testing splitted in two halves was the price to pay in order to reduce costs, so there was no relevance in complaining about the measure.
“I think there's no point complaining about the one and a half days of testing, because that was an agreement between all teams in order to only have one test this year to save costs. So no point going into that too much.”
Seidl however voiced his hopes for an extended testing calendar for the next season, especially because of the new set of technical regulations enforced from 2022 onwards.
“We all hope that for next year, we go back to more testing days again, especially knowing that we have completely new cars next year.”
The German asserted what he and his team think might be the best testing agenda, as he explained how important it is to have enough time to process the learnings gathered from the first week of testing to the other.
“In my point of view, or at least from the McLaren point of view, it makes sense to do two tests with a good gap also in between, in order to be able to digest what we have learned from the first test, and also to be able to react with these brand new cars.”