The FIA World Motor Sport Council meeting has brought about a change in the F1 Grid procedure, helping media catch hold of the drivers for a little longer than they could earlier.
Pre-race interviews were on the decline as drivers appeared on the grid only a few minutes before the scheudled national anthem ceremony and hence the media was being starved of any pre race footage that they could get their hands on.
Drivers and media have a 6 minute window in which they can exchange any sort of content that they desire, as the pit lane is closed 20 minutes prior to the formation lap and the national anthem ceremony takes place 14 minutes before the formation lap.
Drivers then rush back to the paddock to get everything in place before that all important formation lap.
From the Canadian GP onwards, the pit lane will be closed a little earlier, so as to facilitate more conversation between the drivers and the media.
These little driver bytes will help engage fans a little better as well, as they would be dying to get their favourite driver’s thoughts just before an important grand prix.
“The World Council approved changes to the 2018 F1 Sporting Regulations to ensure the cars and drivers are on the starting grid for 10 minutes longer before the national anthem ceremony, thereby providing better access to the drivers for the media.
“These changes will be in effect from the Canadian Grand Prix this weekend.” the FIA statement read.
It will be interesting to see how this little tweak works for both the drivers and the fans. While the fans could be excited about those extra little ‘driver moments’ that they could witness, the drivers could be a little flustered about all the media interference just before the all important race.