The FIA’s ‘Final Inspection’ of the Korean GP venue has been postponed by a week until Tuesday September 28.
Charlie Whiting was due to visit the track on his way to Singapore next week. However a national holiday in Korea made the logistics complicated, so he decided to postpone and go there afterwards instead.
The inspection will thus take place just 23 days before the official start of the Grand Prix meeting on Thursday October 21, rather than the 90 specified in the FIA Sporting Regulations. Whiting has however been updated with photographs of the work on a regular basis.
Although to the outside world the inspection is inevitably seen as a critical deadline, it seems that the FIA does not share that view, and it is assumed that the race is going ahead as planned even if work is not completed by September 28. In other words, the visit is unlikely to be followed by any kind of annoucement. However, that clearly doesn’t guarantee that there won’t be a last minute cancellation if work falls behind.
Incidentally, when Karun Chandhok did his demo he was not running on the final track surface. The ‘binder course’ layer that he drove on has had to be ground down since the Red Bull run took place in order to smooth out bumps. Apparently it has to be perfect, as any problems with it cannot be disguised by the final layer.
Meanwhile Tilke GmbH has sent its top asphalt man to Korea to keep an eye on progress…