F1 practice sessions will be shortened to a single hour of running during Fridays across the 2021 season.

In an update to the 2021 FIA sporting regulations, the opening two practice sessions held on Fridays will be trimmed by 30 minutes next season, with FP1 and FP2 lasting one hour each.

Previously, both sessions have taken place over 90 minutes, before a 60-minute final practice session is held ahead of qualifying on Saturday morning.

FP3 and the rest of the race weekend will remain unchanged, but teams and the drivers will have an hour less to practice for grands prix next year.

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.”

Additionally, FP3 must take place no less than 19 hours after FP2 - an increase from 18 and a half hours.

F1 has been evaluating ways to cutback grand prix weekends as the calendar continues to grow, with the 2021 F1 calendar including a record 23 races and featuring three triple-header events.

During the 2020 season, F1 experimented with a shorter weekend format at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, with no running on Friday and just a single 90-minute practice session held on Saturday morning at Imola prior to qualifying. 

The curfew period on Thursday and Friday night at events in 2021 will also be extended from eight hours to nine hours, beginning 12 hours before the start of FP1 and FP3 respectively. 

As they did in 2020, Pirelli will continue to supply teams with the same allocation of tyre compounds.

The 2021 F1 season is scheduled to begin with the Australian Grand Prix on 21 March.

 

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