The FIA has found a middle ground for 2021. The first and second free practice sessions will still be maintained, but instead of 90 minutes these sessions now only last 60 minutes.
The opening two practice sessions on Formula 1 weekends are set to be shortened by 30 minutes in 2021, with FP1 and FP2 lasting one hour each.
Traditionally, the first two sessions of the weekend, held on a Friday (Thursday in Monaco), have been 90 minutes in length, with the final practice on Saturday morning lasting 60 minutes.
However, all three practice sessions are set to be reduced to one hour, as indicated by the 2021 Sporting Regulations.
Article 32.1 of next year’s sporting rules states: “Two free practice sessions (P1 and P2), each lasting one hour and separated by at least two and a half hours, will take place on the second day of the Event.”
A further change mandates that FP3 must take place no less than 19 hours (increased from 18 and a half hours) after FP2.
Neither the FIA and F1 have officially confirmed the change, with the matter still believed to be under evaluation.
F1’s calendar has a record 23 rounds listed, and it is believed that some two-day events, mirroring the format that took place in Imola this year, may be implemented in 2021.
Such weekends would see just one practice session take place on Saturday before qualifying, while the race would take place as usual on a Sunday.
The new season is scheduled to begin in Australia on March 21.
SHORTER RACE FORMAT FOR ALL RACE WEEKENDS IN 2021 SHORTER RACE FORMAT FOR ALL RACE WEEKENDS IN 2021
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THE NEXT RACE 2021
|02:00 - 03:30||Free practice 1|
|06:00 - 07:30||Free practice 2|
|04:00 - 05:00||Free practice 3|
|07:00 - 07:18||Qualifying|
|06:10 - 08:10||Race|