Formula One Management has moved to extend the new pit restrictions put in place following the German Grand Prix by revealing that broadcast teams will also be banned from the pitlane during practice sessions.
The FIA had previously confirmed a ban for both qualifying and races, with FOM now informing broadcasters that that ban will be extended to all sessions over the course of an F1 weekend.
The move comes after FOM cameraman Paul Allen was injured after being struck by a wheel that had come away from the Red Bull of Mark Webber following his first stop at the Nurburgring.Sky Sports
broadcaster of F1 in the UK, insists it will work to ensure that its coverage of the sport isn't affected by the change, with part of its team regularly being based in the pits during free practice.
“Following the serious incident which occurred in the pitlane during the German GP last weekend, Sky Sports F1 HD will be working to all new guidelines as specified by FOM,” a statement read.
“Safety remains a prime concern and we are sure that, whilst the new regulations will mean certain changes to pitlane protocols, we are confident that our coverage will not be affected.”
However, Will Buxton – pitlane reporter for NBC's
coverage in the United States – said the changes would make things more difficult for both broadcasters and fans alike to keep up to speed with the action.
“We accept the risks when entering the pitlane,” he wrote on his Twitter
page. “Risks for practice nowhere near as great as in race situation. Hope this is reviewed soon. We don't get garage access either, so information gathering in practice sessions will rely on teams upping PR game hugely.
“How are any of we pit reporters now supposed to bring you fans the info that you need and that is our job to give in the practice sessions? That's why my back is up. Because you as fans will lose out. For everyone's sake, I hope this is only an interim solution.”