Is Istanbul Park the best F1 track Hermann Tilke has designed?
Bernie Ecclestone’s track designer of choice gets a lot of flak from fand for building dull circuits. But Istanbul’s mix of gradients, a pair of decent overtaking opportunities, and the impressive four-apex turn eight make it one of his more popular efforts.
How do you think it compares to his other tracks?
A1-Ring, Austria (1997) – Tilke lopped all the fast corners off the old, super-fast Osterreichring and replaced them with hairpins. the result was a soulless track but one that was at least good for overtaking and produced a few decent races, before being dropped in 2003.
Sepang International Circuit, Malaysia (1999) – Mixes fast corners and long straights, but few really impressive bends.
New Hockenheimring, Germany (2002) – Widely derided for turning the high-speed Hockenheimring into just another stadium track without a corner worthy of the name.
Bahrain International Circuit, Bahrain (2004) – An A1-Ring in the desert. Flat and featureless.
Shanghai International Circuit, China (2004) – Vast sums spent on a totally charmless track. It’s flat, it’s wide, it’s medium-high downforce, and it’s only interesting when it rains (fortunately that happened the last two years in a row).
Fuji Speedway, Japan (2007) – Stripped away the fast, sweeping corners of the Fuji circuit and installed a series of tight, slow corners in their place. A miserable replacement for the mighty Suzuka Circuit.
For more information on these tracks see:
- F1 circuits history part 13: 1995-1998
- F1 circuits history part 14: 1999-2002
- F1 circuits history part 15: 2003-2007
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