F1 chiefs admit work finishing Jeddah circuit will go "down to the wire"

Formula 1 chiefs admit Saudi Arabia's work on finishing its Jeddah Corniche circuit will go "down to the wire", but remain confident enough essential components will be ready for the race to go ahead.

F1 chiefs admit work finishing Jeddah circuit will go "down to the wire"

Reports suggest that the facility is still far from finished ahead of its inaugural race on December 5.

F1 race director Michael Masi, who has to formally sign off the track as being fit for use, will pay a visit on Tuesday to assess progress at first hand.

F1 sporting director Steve Nielsen, who plays a key role in approving the facilities at new venues and helping promoters to meet F1 standards, is also confident that it will be ready, but admitted organisers are "up against it".

"It's an ambitious project, it will be a great facility," he told Autosport.

"They're up against it, they are. But they're literally working 24/7 as they have been for quite a long time now. I saw some more photos this morning, and they've made huge progress. But still a lot to do.

"So it really is going to be down to the wire. But they'll get it done. Everything we need to put the race on safely we'll have, I'm confident of that."

Jeddah Street Circuit overview

Jeddah Street Circuit overview

Photo by: Uncredited

Masi flew straight to Doha after Sunday's Brazilian GP, and the Australian is making a quick trip to Jeddah from there before the action kicks off in Qatar next weekend.

"As I said last week, I'm confident that it will be ready," he said. "The fact that it's a three-hour flight it became quite convenient just to go there and have a look."

Masi acknowledged that the original schedule for the building of the venue involved a late finish.

"It was always going to be very close. There's no doubt about that. Everything that I've seen, the progress day-on-day and week-on[week has been amazing since I was there last, and looking forward to having a look on Tuesday."

Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali also remains confident the circuit will be ready in time.

"I think that we are confident with a promoter that he is working day and night, even night and day to arrive there," Domenicali told Autosport. "And I'm confident that they will arrive like this [puts thumb to chin].

"But they are really working very, very hard. And you will see the level of investment that they will provide. It will be perfect, I'm sure, in the next season, but it will be very, very, very good already for this year."

Domenicali conceded that some elements of the venue that aren't essential to running the race might not be ready on time.

"It's possible, but the track will be done, the priority we know is there. But you will see the level of show that they're going to bring there too. They are all excited, a lot of work has been done. So it's really good."

shares
comments
Giovinazzi: When money rules F1 can be "ruthless"
Previous article

Giovinazzi: When money rules F1 can be "ruthless"

Next article

Mission Winnow could step back from Ferrari F1 title sponsorship

Mission Winnow could step back from Ferrari F1 title sponsorship
Load comments
Why newly-retired Raikkonen won't miss F1 Plus

Why newly-retired Raikkonen won't miss F1

After 349 grand prix starts, 46 fastest laps, 21 wins and one world championship, Kimi Raikkonen has finally called time on his F1 career. In an exclusive interview with Autosport on the eve of his final race, he explains his loathing of paddock politics and reflects on how motorsport has changed over the past two decades

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shakeup Plus

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shakeup

Formula 1 cars will look very different this year as the long-awaited fresh rules finally arrive with the stated aim of improving its quality of racing. Autosport breaks down what the return of 'ground effect' aerodynamics - and a flurry of other changes besides - means for the teams, and what fans can expect

Formula 1
Jan 21, 2022
Why new era F1 is still dogged by its old world problems Plus

Why new era F1 is still dogged by its old world problems

OPINION: The 2022 Formula 1 season is just weeks away from getting underway. But instead of focusing on what is to come, the attention still remains on what has been – not least the Abu Dhabi title decider controversy. That, plus other key talking points, must be resolved to allow the series to warmly welcome in its new era

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2022
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Plus

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2022
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Plus

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. JAMES NEWBOLD hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwarts

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Plus

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Plus

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021 Plus

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as STUART CODLING finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022