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Whiting plays down Paul Ricard surface concerns

2018-06-22 10:46

CHANGES ON THE WAY: F1's Charlie Whiting says more safety measures will be put in place for 2015 following Jules Bianchi's horrific crash at the Japanese GP on Oct 5. Image: AFP / Dimitar Dilkoff

Charlie Whiting has played down concerns about Paul Ricard's 'patchwork' track surface.

Although the French venue has prepared itself for the first grand prix in the country for a decade, drivers and engineers were alarmed when they inspected the surface on Thursday.

'Lots of patches on the track'

What they found is patches and strips of mismatched and repaired asphalt, mainly in the braking and traction zones or the middle of corners.

READ: F1 French GP returns after 3 decades: Slavica Ecclestone happy with Paul Ricard track

"I've heard that there are a lot of patches here. I wonder what sort of grip we are going to find," said Sergio Perez.

On June 2, there were reportedly problems during a GT race, and temperatures this weekend are expected to be high.

"Don't worry. The surface is ok. It's not bad. At least the track has a bit of character," FIA race director Charlie Whiting told Auto Motor und Sport.

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel, however, admitted he is no fan of the Paul Ricard layout.

"I think there are better circuits in France. If the French grand prix stays on the calendar, my wish would be for a different one," said the German.

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