The Grand Prix Drivers' Association (GPDA) plan to inspect the Jerez circuit later this month to verify that safety improvements have been made to the track before the drivers agree to resume testing at the venue, autosport.com can reveal.
Formula One drivers became frustrated with the safety standards at the Spanish circuit and, after pushing for changes, the circuit organisers eventually agreed to make modifications to facilities, personnel and the medical centres in time for December testing.
With the GPDA keen to ensure that the promises are fulfilled, they plan to send a representative that will inspect the facility before the first winter test there to make sure everything is in order.
The GPDA will likely send down Toyota doctor Riccardo Ceccarelli to perform that inspection. He has been working closely with the drivers' body to improve safety at testing, and it was his original report on Jerez that created the concern among drivers that ultimately led to the push for modifications.
One high level source close to the GPDA told autosport.com that they hoped Jerez would have its facilities in shape prior to the first major test, which is scheduled to start on December 5th, and that the situation would be resolved happily for all concerned.
However, should the improvements not be up to scratch, then the drivers could go as far as refusing to drive at the Spanish track - although the GPDA hoped that such a course of action would not be required.
GPDA director Mark Webber has told autosport.com that the body is confident things are moving in the right direction, but he insisted that the drivers were not willing to accept half measures.
"It seems we are making sound progress with Jerez," he said. "They needed to, because apparently it was dire. It was so bad, and it might never get out just how bad it was. It wasn't good.
"We are going the right way about it, but we still have a bit more to do. This is something you cannot do at 70 percent. It is always the 30 percent that catches you out. So it has got to be done properly."
The GPDA have shown an increased willingness in recent weeks to flex their muscles when it comes to safety standards at circuits.
Autosport.com revealed at the Italian Grand Prix the body's concerns about safety at Monza, which subsequently led to a confrontation with FIA president Max Mosley about the drivers going public with their feelings.
Former GPDA director David Coulthard told the November issue of F1 Racing that it was important the drivers stood up for what they believed in - even if it put them at risk of sanctions from the governing body.
"We have to be prepared to stand up and be counted," he said. "It isn't just a case of sounding off.
"No, it's a case of: we have views, and we can back them up with facts, and we aren't about to be intimidated into keeping our mouths shut for fear of getting a slap.
"And we aren't just shouting ya-boo-sucks at an authority figure. We're asking real questions and want real answers."