RaceFans Round-up: No Silverstone run deliberate choice

RaceFans Round-up: No Silverstone run deliberate choice

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In the round-up: Williams have taken a strategic choice not to shakedown their new FW46 prior to the Bahrain test

In brief

No Silverstone shakedown a strategic choice – Vowles

Williams team principal James Vowles says he made a deliberate strategic choice not to run their new FW46 for a shakedown run at Silverstone prior to this week’s test in Bahrain.

Red Bull, Mercedes, McLaren and Aston Martin have all run their new cars at the British Grand Prix circuit for one of their 200km filming days allowed under the regulations. However, Vowles explained that he preferred to save one of those days for later in the season.

“We could easily have run there, but there is balance between doing a virtual track test and Silverstone,” Vowles told media including RaceFans. “I’d much rather want to spend time dedicated to the virtual track test and then basically film it, rather than shake it down, in Bahrain.

“Silverstone, I have several feelings towards it. I’ve done it for a number of years, and sometimes you get some really good things out of it. Sometimes you’re running around on extreme wet tyres in blustery conditions with your pit equipment falling over and you don’t learn a single thing. And that balance means I’d much rather do virtual track testing and then bring the car to Bahrain where we can do that properly, and then furthermore, save that filming day for later in the year where we either need footage or we need some other questions to be answered.”

F1 Academy cuts season from 21 races to 14

F1 Academy will hold two races per weekend instead of three this year. The all-female series is running exclusively as a support series to Formula 1 for the first time in its second season.

However due to the limited time available during grand prix weekends, the series has taken the decision to drop its second, partial-reversed-grid race. The seven-round championship will therefore feature a total of 14 races instead of 21.

Wildcard confirmed for first F1 Academy round

Saudi Arabian driver Reema Juffali will be the first wildcard entry into this year’s F1 Academy series as she competes in the season opening round in Jeddah.

Noted for being the first woman from her country to be granted a racing license, the 32-year-old raced in the GT World Challenge series last year.

“As the saying goes: ‘if you can’t see it, you won’t believe it’. So, hopefully Saudi fans can see that there is a Saudi racing driver out there and it will get them to thinking that ‘this is something I can do’,” said Juffali. “It is for this reason I have decided to take this challenge on. This is just the beginning.”

Sato becomes Honda executive advisor

Takuma Sato, RLL, Indycar, Indianapolis 500, 2020
Two-times Indy 500 winner Sato has a new role at Honda

Two-times Indianapolis 500 winner and former Formula 1 podium finisher Takuma Sato has been named as an executive advisor for the Honda Racing Corporation.

The 47-year-old, who has raced with Honda power for the vast majority of his racing career, will support Honda’s driver development programme and “operational structure for racing activities.”

“In addition to passing on the skills and experience I have amassed to future generations,” Sato said, “I will still be a challenger and continue to take on new challenges together with Honda without losing the spirit of ‘no attack, no chance.’ Through such challenges, I will strive to contribute to the further advancement of Honda motorsports activities.”

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