FIA outlines plan for F1 race directors in 2023

The FIA is to continue with Formula 1 race director Niels Wittich in 2023, but he will also help lead a programme bringing on the next generation of officials.

FIA outlines plan for F1 race directors in 2023
Listen to this article

Last year, in the wake of the controversy over the FIA's handling of the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, motor racing's governing body elected a system whereby F1 race control was led by two different individuals.

Wittich and Edoardo Freitas shared the race director role for much of the season, as the FIA took on board the lessons from what had gone on before.

In the end, Wittich was assigned the role for the latter stages of the year and it is understood will continue for 2023.

However, with the FIA keen to ensure that there is a strong succession plan in place for the long term, the governing body does not just want to hand over full responsibility of the race director role to just one individual.

So, while Wittich will continue, the FIA is going to roll out a more intense training and development programme to help nurture future race directors and stewards.

This will be formally launched next month when the FIA holds its first High Performance Programme for Officials in Geneva.

There are eight stewards and 16 race directors from across the world signed up for this plan.

As well as that two-day event on February 18-19, trainees will be given a bespoke programme of experience-building through attendance at FIA events to shadow and observe senior officials.

Bernd Maylander, Safety Car Driver and Niels Wittich, Race Director, FIA

Bernd Maylander, Safety Car Driver and Niels Wittich, Race Director, FIA

Photo by: Jerry Andre / Motorsport Images

The FIA has also changed the format of its Race Director Seminar and International Stewards Programme away from an annual event. For 2023, it will become a series of webinars to ensure improved dialogue as events develop over the course of the year.

Speaking about the plans at the Monte Carlo Rally, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem said he was happy with the way things were evolving.

"You see, I inherited a lot," he explained. "I won't say it was a good inheritance, but I am very happy that the pathway for race directors and for stewards is going well. There will be in February the training in the FIA headquarters, and you will see changes an evolution thereafter."

Read Also:

Ben Sulayem has also reiterated his belief that the best talent for future race directors can be found in rally co-drivers.

"Who is in charge of the pathway?" he said. "An ex-rally co-driver, Mr [Ronan] Morgan. So you see, they are very structured people. Very analytical. You can say rally co-drivers are more structured than the rally drivers."

The FIA has not yet confirmed the individuals who will be mentored by Wittich at F1 races, but they are likely to include F3 race director Claro Ziegahn , F2 race director Rui Marques and senior stewards like Silvia Bellot.

shares
comments

Related video

Fittipaldi stays at Haas for fifth season in F1 test/reserve role
Previous article

Fittipaldi stays at Haas for fifth season in F1 test/reserve role

Next article

How Alpine plans to take the next step in F1 2023

How Alpine plans to take the next step in F1 2023
The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023 Prime

The crucial tech changes F1 teams must adapt to in 2023

Changes to the regulations for season two of Formula 1's ground-effects era aim to smooth out last year’s troubles and shut down loopholes. But what areas have been targeted, and what impact will this have?

Are these the 50 quickest drivers in F1 history? Prime

Are these the 50 quickest drivers in F1 history?

Who are the quickest drivers in Formula 1 history? Luke Smith asked a jury of experienced and international panel of experts and F1 insiders. Some of them have worked closely with F1’s fastest-ever drivers – so who better to vote on our all-time top 50? We’re talking all-out speed here rather than size of trophy cabinet, so the results may surprise you…

Formula 1
Jan 25, 2023
One easy way the FIA could instantly improve F1 Prime

One easy way the FIA could instantly improve F1

OPINION: During what is traditionally a very quiet time of year in the Formula 1 news cycle, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem has been generating headlines. He’s been commenting on massive topics in a championship that loves them, but also addressing necessary smaller changes too. Here we suggest a further refinement that would be a big boon to fans

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2023
How can McLaren keep hold of Norris? Prime

How can McLaren keep hold of Norris?

Lando Norris is no longer the young cheeky-chappy at McLaren; he’s now the established ace. And F1's big guns will come calling if the team can’t give him a competitive car. Here's what the team needs to do to retain its prize asset

Formula 1
Jan 24, 2023
What difference did F1's fastest pitstops of 2022 make? Prime

What difference did F1's fastest pitstops of 2022 make?

While a quick pitstop can make all the difference to the outcome of a Formula 1 race, most team managers say consistency is more important than pure speed. MATT KEW analyses the fastest pitstops from last season to see which ones – if any – made a genuine impact

Formula 1
Jan 23, 2023
When F1 'holiday' races kept drivers busy through the winter Prime

When F1 'holiday' races kept drivers busy through the winter

Modern Formula 1 fans have grown accustomed to a lull in racing during winter in the northern hemisphere. But, as MAURICE HAMILTON explains, there was a time when teams headed south of the equator rather than bunkering down in the factory. And why not? There was fun to be had, money to be made and reputations to forge…

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2023
What Porsche social media frenzy says about F1’s manufacturer allure Prime

What Porsche social media frenzy says about F1’s manufacturer allure

Porsche whipped up a frenzy thanks to a cryptic social media post last week, and though it turned out to be a false alarm, it also highlighted more just why manufacturers remain such an important element in terms of the attraction that they bring to F1. It is little wonder that several other manufacturers are bidding for a slice of the action.

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2023
Why new Williams F1 boss shouldn't avoid 'Mercedes B-team' comparisons Prime

Why new Williams F1 boss shouldn't avoid 'Mercedes B-team' comparisons

OPINION: Williams has moved to replace the departed Jost Capito by appointing former Mercedes chief strategist James Vowles as its new team principal. But while he has sought to play down the idea of moulding his new squad into a vision of his old one, some overlap is only to be expected and perhaps shouldn't be shied away from

Formula 1
Jan 17, 2023