After Formula 1 teams were given just three days in 2021 to get to know their new battle weapon from oat to barley, the number of test days for 2022 has doubled. This was chosen because of the major regulatory changes, which meant that the racing stables had to design completely new cars. Where the winter tests were held for years in Barcelona and only in Bahrain last year, it was decided to split the test for 2022. The first week of testing will take place in Barcelona from February 23 to 25, followed by a three-day test in Bahrain between March 10 and 12.
Earlier it became clear that the 2022 winter tests will not be televised and that F1TV Pro will only report live from the test week in Bahrain. A summary of one hour of the test week in Barcelona will be broadcast at the end of the day. Initially the plan was to allow spectators in Spain during the F1 test, but sources have indicated Motorsport.com Netherlands confirmed that this is not going to happen. The reason for this is the situation surrounding the corona virus in Spain and Catalonia.
Although Spain this week asked the European Union to treat COVID-19 – just like the flu – as an endemic disease, the infection rates have been rising sharply since November. Over the past seven days, an average of 115,279 infections per day were detected, of which 21,233 in Catalonia. As a result, it is not considered responsible for admitting the public to the drivers’ first introduction to their new F1 car for 2022, especially since the sport has worked with strict protocols regarding the corona virus for the past two years. It is not yet known to what extent fans will be admitted during the test week in Bahrain.