Drivers eager for extra practice starts
22 August 2013 – Formula 1 drivers are hoping for extra practice starts ahead of Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix, with questions being raised over the effect of new drainage channels.
In a bid to improve rain clearance, diagonal grooves have been cut along the opening 11 grid slots, with Spa-Francorchamps renowned for mixed weather conditions.
However, with little information as to how the modifications will impact race starts, certain drivers are eager to gain prior experience during Friday's practice sessions.
"I had a meeting and we will probably bring it up in the drivers' or team managers' briefing to ask for a practice start," explained Toro Rosso's Jean-Éric Vergne.
Sebastian Vettel said of the situation: "Obviously we don’t usually have many practice starts but maybe that will change [this weekend], to have a look for all the teams."
The reigning triple World Champion added, however, that he is not anticipating major issues to arise with the additional drainage slots: "We don’t know the difference as we’ve never had starts on that kind of surface, but I don’t expect a big difference."
Small track changes at Spa-Francorchamps