Tents, awnings to replace motorhomes in Austrian GP paddock

Jonathan Noble

As part of a move to limit the number of staff needing to attend, F1 has agreed with teams that the usual motorhomes that are a feature for European races will no longer be brought along.

The building and transportation of F1's super-structure motorhomes required a lot of staff and it was felt that it would be better for teams to use circuit facilities instead.

The absence of the motorhomes means that there is now space for a paddock rejig, with plans having been agreed for team trucks – which are normally close to the pit garage doors – being moved further away.

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Teams will then build tents and awnings at the back of the pits, which they can use as overspill space from the garage to help with any social distancing requirements.

In a video explaining how Mercedes was coping with the challenge of the coronavirus races, Karl Fanson, head of its race team logistics, explained how different things will be.

"It won't be the same setup as a normal European race because we won't have any motorhomes," he said. "In agreement with F1, what we've managed to do is we're going to move the race trucks further away from the garages, and we'll be supplying our own tents and awnings.

"[This will] give us more working space within the garage. It's easier to social distance and work comfortably."

F1 teams are also going to have to change their procedures of dealing with outside suppliers in the paddock, in a bid to make sure there is minimal risk of infection.

Fanson explained that deliveries of items from the factory will now have to be collected away from the paddock, while there will be a different approach to getting fuel and tyres.

"Normally we would have our fuel delivered to the garage and then we would send people to Pirelli to collect the tyres," he said.

"Now, there will be drop off point and collection point for the fuel, and also the tyres will be taken to a drop off point. Our lads will go to the collection point and collect the tyres, and then vice versa.

"Once we're finished with the tyres we'll take them back, and Pirelli will pick them up once we're clear of the area."