F1 moving towards ‘Christmas shutdown’ agreement

Formula 1 teams are moving to install a forced shutdown period during the winter off-season to cope with the sport’s now ever-expanding race calendars.

Already, the regulations require that all teams observe a strict “shutdown period” of two full weeks during the now customary three-week calendar gap in August.

And with this year’s 22-race calendar expanding to an unprecedented 24 grands prix in 2023, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff admits talks are taking place about adding a second shutdown period.

“It’s great that this season is ending a couple of weeks earlier than last year,” he said. “Employees are already at their limit.

“I think we will agree with the teams on a winter break. Not everyone agrees, but we will do it for our staff. One or two weeks of vacation in the winter will benefit everyone.

“Yes, work at the factory will continue over Christmas and New Year, but the race team, which goes from place to place all year, will be able to rest.

“Many team leaders would like to repeat what we have in the summer – a mandatory two-week break that includes Christmas and New Year. It is still being discussed, but there are positive signs.

“I’m sure that for the sake of the well-being of our people, we will agree.”

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