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2014 testing set for January start

ESPN Staff
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Current rules prohibit January testing but the FIA is working on a solution for the teams © Sutton Images
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Pre-season testing in 2014 is likely to start in January due to the major change in engine regulations.

At present testing is banned in January by the sporting regulations, but Autosport reports that the FIA is looking to find a solution that would allow the teams to begin testing a few weeks earlier than normal. This is at the request of engine manufacturers - with the new 1.6 litre V6 turbo engines set to be introduced - and Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn said a late January first test would allow teams to still run their new cars rather than an interim model.

"We will have to anticipate the programme by two or three weeks," Brawn told Autosport. "If we leave it late, for our car that is okay. But, if it has an engine that carries over some problems into the start of the season, that is no good. You have to find the right balance.

"I think every team is going to want to be out early with the new engine and understand it. I am sure everybody will build their proper race car, even if it is with launch spec of bodywork, to do that work."

Brawn also said that tests in the Middle East would be even more beneficial next year to avoid a "messy" start to the season.

"The main thing is to give the engines and power trains a good work out at high temperature. If the first time we get to try the new powertrain is Bahrain, or wherever the first race is next year, it could get very messy. And we don't want that - we want to avoid it."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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