F1 cars will hit 298kph in Craner Curves at the new Donington Park in 2010

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

2010 Donington Park F1 circuit (click to enlarge)
2010 Donington Park F1 circuit (click to enlarge)
When – or if – the British Grand Prix moves to Donington Park in 2010 the new circuit will take Silverstone’s place as the fourth quickest circuit regularly used by Formula 1.

Documents submitted by the circuit owners to North West Leicestershire District Council projects an average lap speed of 220.75kph with cars hitting a maximum of 316kph on the revised start/finish straight.

But even more excitingly, they’ll reach almost 300kph in the thrilling, downhill Craner Curves.

The following current F1 tracks are faster: Monza (average lap sped 254kph), Spa-Francorchamps (234kph), Suzuka (233kph) and Silverstone (228kph).

The estimated lap time is put at 1’17.27. The track length is 4.738km, so assuming the maximum race distance remains 305km we can expect the race to be 65 laps long.

A lap of the new Donington Park

From the new start/finish line the cars will hit the top speed of 316kph before braking down to 94kph for the slowest corner on the track, which is presently called the Adelaide hairpin.

The new section of track follows, with the cars deccelerating from 285kph to 234kph in a long left-hander, then braking for the second-slowest corner on the track, a 99kph left-hand hairpin.

A 190kph right-hander will bring them back onto the present track, and the cars will hit 292kph on the approach to Redgate.

Redgate, which today is the first corner on the track, will be taken at 186kph. The fabulous Craner Curves are apparently going to be untouched, and the cars will be doing 298kph as they exit them and head towards Old Hairpin. There they’ll ease off to 229kph.

The cars will be back up to 296kph before McLeans, where they’ll have to brake down to 196kph. The final corner will be the third slowest on the track at 142kph, and will hopefully allows cars to follow each other closely onto the main straight.

But will it happen?

The new circuit looks promising – but with the source of funding for the multi-million pound project unclear even before the credit crunch started to bite, I just hope we have a British Grand prix at all in 2010.

Bernie Ecclestone recently said that Lewis Hamilton’s world championship victory did not guarantee the future of the British Grand Prix.

In 1993, when the circuit was last used by F1, Alain Prost set a pole position time of 1’10.458 (205.552kph) in his Williams-Renault FW15C on the 4.023km track.

Thanks to Chris for the link to all the Donington Park planning documents.

2010 Donington Park F1 circuit (click to enlarge)
2010 Donington Park F1 circuit (click to enlarge)

More on the 2010 British Grand Prix at Donington Park

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