The improvements of Ímola, in ‘stand-by’

Although the rain gives some respite before the weekend, and the course of the Santerno river has stopped harassing the vicinity of the Enzo e Dino Ferrari Autodrome, in Emilia Romagna they are still fighting against the tragedy of the floods. There are already thirteen deaths according to the authorities, close to 13,000 evacuees and several cities flooded with more than a meter of muddy water in the streets: Lugo, Forli, Cesena, Faenza… Ferrari has donated one million euros for the rescue and reconstruction tasks. The sport is in the background after the cancellation of this weekend’s grand prix in Ímola, but Formula 1 recovers its pulse and thinks about the next World Cup stop, next week in Monaco (May 28).

At the Ímola circuit, this Thursday already essential personnel were allowed in to collect all merchandise of the paddock and the garages and send them to Monte Carlo. Some curious people also approached the access bridges to the facilities. This should be the first race in which the teams had their hospitalities, which must now be dismantled ahead of time. The water that flooded the Formula 2, Formula 3 areas or the television production center has subsided slightly. Championship sources ensure that all trucks and other shipments will arrive in the Principality on time, although road travel around Bologna can still present some complications.

Floods in San Pancrazio, near Ravenna, in Emilia-Romagna.
Floods in San Pancrazio, near Ravenna, in Emilia-Romagna.ANTONIO DENTIREUTERS

The evolutions and Monaco

In sporting terms, the non-celebration of the GP has an impact on all the teams, especially those that planned important developments for the weekend that cannot be tested until Monaco. Mercedes came with an ambitious aerodynamic package and Sainz’s Ferrari also had relevant parts, there is talk of a redesigned rear suspension. Of Alonso’s Aston Martin, however, large pieces were not expected until the summer, although there were news in Ímola. The main problem is that the Monte Carlo circuit is too specific, the suspension and height settings of the car for the weekend are very specific and they cannot be extrapolated to any other World Cup track. So the evolutions cannot be evaluated properly there, and perhaps it is worth it for some to delay the incorporation of the improvements and leave them on stand-by until the next race, the Spanish GP in Montmeló (June 4) in a conventional track.

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In addition, the free practices of Monaco are not useful for many inventions: the three sessions are essential for the drivers to gain confidence before the qualifying lap, which marks the weekend. Between the walls, the pilot factor has more incidence than in any other grand prix, so It is not convenient to take away laps of benefits and sensations in practice to check if the pieces work on the track as predicted by the wind tunnel.

De Vries Odyssey

The weather affects everyone equally in Italy, including F1 drivers. The Dutchman Nyck de Vries, from Alpha Tauri, recounted on his Instagram account the problems he encountered to return to the hotel in his Honda sports car after a day’s work in Faenza. “Tuesday at 11:30pm, on the way to Faenza before a marketing day at the factory on Wednesday. It’s raining heavily, Faenza is already flooded and I can’t get to my hotel,” wrote the 28-year-old pilot. He found himself “stuck in a small town”. “Fortunately, McLaren got stuck there earlier and their front jack mechanic Frazer was kind enough to give me his room.” added. She spent the night in accommodation that in the morning “became an emergency shelter for people evacuated overnight.” “After the announcement of the cancellation of the F1 race, I only saw one option to return home: travel through the mountains through Florence to return home safely. “My thoughts are with those affected,” she closes. In his case, everything is a scare.

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