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FIA begin analysis into competing in extreme weather conditions following Qatar Grand Prix

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LUSAIL CITY, QATAR - OCTOBER 08: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull

The FIA have announced that they have begun an analysis into competing in extreme temperatures following the Qatar Grand Prix weekend.

Sunday’s race saw the drivers face hot and humid conditions under the lights at the Lusail International Circuit, with a number of racers having reported feeling unwell after the race.

In the aftermath of the weekend, the FIA announced that they would be working with Formula 1 to explore possible solutions in the case of facing similar conditions at future events.

A statement from the FIA released on Monday evening said: “The FIA notes with concern that the extreme temperature and humidity during the 2023 FIA Formula 1 Qatar Grand Prix had an impact on the wellbeing of the drivers.

“While being elite athletes, they should not be expected to compete under conditions that could jeopardise their health or safety. The safe operation of the cars is, at all times, the responsibility of the Competitors, however as with other matters relating to safety such as circuit infrastructure and car safety requirements, the FIA will take all reasonable measures to establish and communicate acceptable parameters in which Competitions are held.

“As such, the FIA has begun an analysis into the situation in Qatar to provide recommendations for future situations of extreme weather conditions. It should be noted that while next year’s edition of the Qatar Grand Prix is scheduled later in the year, when temperatures are expected to be lower, the FIA prefers to take material action now to avoid a repeat of this scenario.”

The FIA said that a number of potential measures would be discussed at an upcoming medical commission meeting in Paris, and may include “guidance for competitors, research into modifications for more efficient airflow in the cockpit, and recommendations for changes to the calendar to align with acceptable climatic conditions, amongst others.”

It added that “research from other series, such as cross-country events in extreme climates, will be examined for potential applications to circuit events”.

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