Hembery wants to keep Bahrain on test calendar
22 July 2014 – Pirelli Motorsport Director Paul Hembery is still hoping that Bahrain will be able to host a portion of pre-season testing next year, despite a regulation recently being passed to restrict it to European venues.
The Gulf state staged a pair of four-day winter tests this year, following the teams' first outing in Jerez.
But from 2015, Europe is set to hold all three pre-season tests, with this reducing to two, four-day gatherings from 2016. In another change, in-season testing will be cut to a pair of two-day tests, again on the continent.
And Hembery feels the restrictions will hurt what was a suitable balance for the sport's sole tyre supplier.
"It's a shame, because this year we had what we felt was a good compromise," Hembery told GPUpdate.net. "Looking selfishly, this was a very good way to start a season and a good way to have in-season testing.
"We will be making comment that we still feel that the sport should be having at least one session in Bahrain, pre-season, before that's a lost opportunity. Because [the teams] have to get a consensus I guess it doesn't work, but there's a number of them that feel we're losing out by not doing something like that again."
For teams, the downside of testing in Bahrain is the financial burden, with sizeable shipping costs involved.
Hembery feels this area should be looked at to ensure that Pirelli has ample pre-season preparation.
"If there's some financial assistance for the teams to get there then maybe [a test] could be the case," he said.
A mid-season interview with Paul Hembery will be available at GPUpdate.net on Wednesday