Chinese Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton wants ‘alternative plan’ to prevent repeat of China practice scrapping

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Lewis Hamilton wants Formula 1 bosses to work out an “alternative plan” to keep fans entertained in the event of track running being scrapped after the majority of Friday practice for the Chinese Grand Prix was canceled.

Thick fog in Shanghai meant the medical helicopter being used was unable to land at the local hospital, while an alternative route via road was not quick enough to meet the FIA’s safety requirements.

As a result, drivers got just 21 minutes’ worth of running on Friday, with the entirety of FP2 being abandoned due to the weather conditions.

Hamilton ventured out across the pit straight during FP2 to meet his fans in the grandstand, but said he felt sorry for those watching.

“The track was absolutely fine and we could have run all day today with no issue if it weren’t for the clouds,” Hamilton said.

“It’s not good for the fans watching on TV and even worse for all those people in the stands, who have paid money to come out here from the city or even from other countries. They’ve barely seen a car on track today, which must be tough for them.

“We need to work together with the FIA and FOM to find a solution or an alternative plan of some kind when we have circumstances like this in the future.”

Following the lack of running, teams were reportedly offered an hour’s worth of practice later on Friday, only for this to be rejected, with weather conditions also not improving at this time.

Team bosses met with FIA race director Charlie Whiting to discuss the idea of holding the China race on Saturday given the poor forecast for Sunday, only for this also to be decided against, with the weekend set to continue as originally planned.