De la Rosa Raises Safety Concerns Due to Testing Ban

According to Grand Prix Drivers Association (GPDA) president Pedro de la Rosa, the testing ban imposed by the FIA for the upcoming 2009 season will not have the expected effect. Introduced to further reduce costs in F1, the ban will not save much of the teams' budgets this year, but will, however, pose a risk to all test drivers left without enough testing mileage for 2009.

As the teams will not be allowed to test their cars starting the Australian Grand Prix and ending with the season finale at Abu Dhabi, the lack of mileage will lead to safety concerns. Having stayed outside an F1 cockpit for an entire season, the drivers will get “rusty” and not perform well enough when resuming tests.

“We have three sessions and I had this day that in theory I should not have had, and I'm hoping I can test again in the next few weeks, because to me it's very important to arrive in Melbourne with as many miles as possible,” said De la Rosa following the first day of testing at Jerez on Sunday, as reported by

“Otherwise, the situation for a reserve driver is ridiculous. Arriving in Melbourne with very little mileage done or not having a single day of testing during the season just makes the test driver rusty in case we have to climb into the car. And we could be a problem in the safety aspect if you haven't driven enough,” added De la Rosa.

He also argued that the testing ban will not cut the expenses of an F1 outfit in 2009 that much.

“To me, it would be fantastic if we could test more. Because I think that testing is the cheapest way to develop a car. That's my opinion. But I don't think that's possible,” added the Spaniard.
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