The Confederation of Australian Motor Sport, who run the Australian Grand Prix, has sent a team of marshals to Korea to help support and train the 700 Korean marshals in preparation for their inaugural Grand Prix this weekend.
Among them is F1 Fanatic reader and experienced marshal John Booker. Here’s his view of the state of the track and facilities:
The circuit itself is ready for Friday morning’s first session. However, the circuit site itself is very much under construction and will remain that way for the event. But it won’t interfere with the race, just look rather unglamorous on the TV.
There are supposed to be lakes inside the circuit (between turns three and eight) as well as the marina around the final section which are very much just dirt pits at the moment. Word is that they wont be completed until next year.
Their plan for the circuit is very ambitious with the positive effect of giving the Korean’s facilities that can be used for many purposes all through out the year, including a permanent race track. Much better than some of the other new circuits which are only used once a year for the same cost.
The teams’ cargo pods arrived yesterday and all the teams bar two were in the process of getting their garages set-up. HRT hadn’t even opened a single pod while Ferrari were completely set up with both cars in the garage and everyone there is sitting around waiting for Thursday.
Today is our rest day while the circuit contractors make all the minor changes to the track we requested after yesterdays inspection and we will be back at the track tomorrow (Wednesday) for another inspection. Most of the issues are purely line of sight issues between posts due to advertising signs (a problem which also occurs at Albert Park).
Thursday will be the FIA speed test where they run the safety car around to test timing lines and we use it as another full circuit test for all marshals.
There is only one support category which is the Hyundai Genesis Series, which is a touring car series run in South Korea. They will have one practise session on Friday, one qualifying session on Saturday and one race on Sunday.
Neither John nor the race organisers confirmed reports that cement dust was being used at the track to absorb surface oils from the recently-laid tarmac.
Bernie Ecclestone has revealed he nearly cancelled the Korean Grand Prix last month due to the late-running construction work.
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