Right now, our favorite F1 drivers (and their respective teams) are chilling the fuck out after six months of racing. In fact, they can all enjoy a short holiday for the next few weeks and then return to Belgium relaxed but ready to race. Well, if you’re fairly new to Formula 1, especially if you’re one of the shiny new fans thanks to the Netflix series Drive to survive, then you may be missing the concept of the series’ “summer shutdown.” But don’t worry, Mercedes-Benz AMG Petronas F1 Team engineer Andrew Shovlin explains it to us.
In a tweet from the Mercedes team, Shovlin, or “Shov,” explains to viewers why there’s a summer break and it’s not just a breezy break after traveling the world for six months. It’s actually stipulated in the rules.
That regulation requires every F1 team to stop work for 14 consecutive days. All development, analysis – really Any work on the car must be halted unless pre-approved by the FIA. Teams and drivers are even forbidden from reading e-mails. However, teams can perform maintenance to prepare for the next 50 weeks of race ahead.
It’s a lot of hands off and just lets everyone catch up with themselves a bit. I like to compare it to working on a stubborn project that you just can’t find a solution to. Sometimes you take a break, stop working for a bit to relax, and when you come back you have a breakthrough.
Some teams come back in better form after the break. Some morph into completely different teams (in a bad way). But one thing is for sure, racing will still be good. Except maybe for Ferrari.