Formula One’s Monaco Grand Prix is one of the series’ more traditional events, and nothing epitomizes that quite like the four-day Monaco weekend. Rather than the standard Friday-Saturday-Sunday calendar, Monaco has opted for Thursday-Saturday-Sunday. But in 2022, that will be changing, and Monaco’s weekend will look a lot more like a standard F1 event.
“Monaco will be in three days, straight away,” F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali told CNN. “So Friday, Saturday, and Sunday instead of Thursday, hold, and then Saturday and Sunday. That’s the change we’re going to introduce next year.”
Racing was paused on Friday in Monte Carlo for a variety of reasons. The race was moved to the weekend of Ascension Day in 1950, which was the first year of Formula One. Ascension Day always takes place on a Thursday, so it’s likely that practice for the Monaco Grand Prix was moved to Thursday to take advantage of a lack of traffic — especially considering the fact that, on Friday, the track was given back over to the usual flow of traffic. It’s a tradition that has stuck, even in our more modern era, where there’s never really a break in traffic. But the Friday off meant that the paddock could take advantage of the numerous social events that took place throughout the weekend.
Next year, though, Domenicali has planned a whole other variety of changes. While not yet official, the current plan is to shorten the weekend to make time for one single practice session on Friday instead of two. That means that media duties could take place on Friday morning rather than Thursday, thus cutting down the amount of time teams spend at one venue.
That’s going to be crucial in the coming season, considering how packed the schedule is. There are multiple instances where F1 will be competing for two to three weekends in a row, so cutting down on the amount of time spent at one track will be essential to a smooth travel flow.