Ferrari backs two-day GPs

The relative painlessness of cramming qualifying and the Grand Prix itself into a single day at Suzuka has once more raised serious discussion about trimming race meetings to two days in order to save costs

Ferrari backs two-day GPs

A number of technical and engineering staff were all for the idea at Suzuka and Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn said: "I think with the number of races we have now, it's at it's limit. To have our mechanics, technicians and engineers away from home so much, plus the fact that a lot of them get involved with testing to give the team continuity, means that it is very tough for them. We've had a great season but it feels like a hard one and we've still got another race to go. If there is a wish to increase the number of races we should look hard at the format."

Brawn went on: "Ferrari has been an advocate of two-day race meetings for quite a long time. We've always felt that three days may be too long and that Saturday and Sunday is perfectly adequate to have a good race meeting. So, prepare on Saturday morning, qualify on Saturday afternoon and race on Sunday, or maybe have a second qualifying session on Sunday morning. There's a lot of things we can look at. We don't need three-day race meetings from a team perspective but from the promoters' perspective it may be different."

Some teams suggest having Friday as a pure test day and then banning all other testing but Ferrari, which admittedly wants to see no such restrictions on external, is against the use of Friday.

"One of the things we have to think about carefully is the new engine format, which I think is a good thing," Brawn said. "If you consider last year, there was a lot of scepticism about one race engines and now it works perfectly well. It has saved us money and Peter Sauber money because we can provide him with engines at a lower cost. Next year we will have two-race engines and if we have free-for-all testing on Friday, I don't see why we'll run on Saturday because we'll be saving the engine. We need to look at the secondary effects of the engine format. I think a two-day race meeting could be enough."

FIA president Max Mosley, present at Suzuka, said: "As far as I'm concerned it sounds like a very good idea, but it's primarily a question for the teams."

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