The FIA and FOM (Formula One Management) have recently imposed a ban on bicycles and other two-wheelers during F1 track walk sessions prior to any race weekend.
Track walks are a great way for drivers and engineers to closely observe the circuit. This allows them to discuss possible strategies and car setups according to the tarmac and other conditions.
It even has its own time slot in the official FIA and F1 schedules on Thursdays. Several drivers prefer to cycle around the track or even ride their e-scooters.
Ahead of the 2023 F1 Saudi Arabian GP, however, the FIA has imposed a bizarre ban on all kinds of transport, like bicycles, e-bikes, scooters, etc., specifically during track walks. This will apply to every race weekend from now on, starting with the Saudi Arabian GP.
The FOM statement read:
“To clarify and to avoid future misunderstanding, the use of any means of transport (bicycles, e-bikes, scooters, e-scooters, etc) is forbidden during the time window stated as ‘Team Track Walks’ on the Event Timetable. No exceptions will be allowed. This decision has been agreed with the FIA.”
The FIA and F1 heads have not given any particular reason as to why they have banned the use of two-wheelers during track walks. This could turn off many drivers, as not all of them would like to walk around circuits they know very well.
Fernando Alonso believes the 'learning curve' in the 2023 F1 Saudi Arabian GP will be 'steeper'
As the 2023 F1 Saudi Arabian GP approaches, Fernando Alonso believes that he and Aston Martin will learn a lot of new aspects about their car. He recalled how good the first race of the season was for him and his team, where he finished third, just behind the two Red Bulls.
The Spaniard said (via the Aston Martin website):
"The car felt very good in Bahrain and we enjoyed our weekend scoring our first podium of the season. But we have now shifted all our focus to this weekend and Jeddah. It will be a very different challenge there as it is a completely different circuit to what we experienced in the opening race."
However, Alonso admitted that the Jeddah International Circuit is quite different from Bahrain, which will drastically change the team's strategies and setups. He added:
"We spent two weeks in Bahrain, and all became very familiar with the circuit and conditions so the learning curve from this Friday will be a lot steeper."
Aston Martin is the biggest surprise of the 2023 F1 season, as the green team has propelled itself up the grid. They are essentially fighting Mercedes and Ferrari for second or third place in the constructors' championship.
If Aston Martin performs well in the Saudi Arabian GP, it will further cement their position as a top team.