In the round-up: Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has explained why the world championship chose not to replace the Chinese Grand Prix after the event was cancelled.
F1 explains decision not to replace Chinese GP
The 2023 F1 calendar was reduced to 23 races when the Chinese Grand Prix was cancelled and the series chose not to replace it. The race was scheduled to take place on 16th April, making it the fourth round of the season, but was called off for the fourth year in a row due to the country’s Covid-19 restrictions.
“The 23-race calendar is a record for F1,” said Domenicali. “We made the decision not to replace China on the calendar [as] the economic benefit of a replacement race was not worth the logistical and sustainability considerations for F1 and our teams.”
Adapting to new home “will take time” – Gasly
Pierre Gasly will make his first start for Alpine at this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, after five-and-a-half years driving for Red Bull’s two Formula 1 teams. He admitted ahead of the race that it “will take a bit of time” to be fully immersed in his new team.
“All my focus is on preparing well for the race weekend and I’m already eager for my first qualifying laps in the A523 before we battle on Sunday in the race,” said Gasly. “I know it will take a bit of time to get totally comfortable with the team and the car, but right now, I’m definitely confident that we can have a strong race here in Bahrain and the target is to come away with some points in the bag and begin the season in the best way possible.”
Campos Racing makes third Eurocup-3 signing
The new Eurocup-3 series, designed to sit below Formula 3 in Europe with the basis of an upgraded Formula Regional car, now has five drivers signed up for its inaugural season.
The latest addition to the grid is Suleiman Zanfari, a Moroccan teenager who has previously been supported by Lando Norris’ family in his racing career and is stepping up the single-seater ladder after three years of racing in Formula 4. He came 17th in his rookie Spanish F4 season in 2020, was 11th in 2021 and then seventh last year despite missing two rounds.
Zanfari is the third signing at Campos Racing, while Drivex School and MP Motorsport each have one driver so far.
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