London Olympic circuit under official consideration

F1 Fanatic round-up

London Olympics 2012 F1 track map proposalIn the round-up: London’s Olympic legacy committee considers a proposal for the site to be used as a venue for an F1 race.

Links

Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

London 2012: Olympic Stadium could become a Formula One circuit (The Guardian)

“Plans for a Formula One circuit in and around the Olympic Stadium are officially now under consideration. The scheme is one of four being reviewed by the London Legacy Development Corporation, who are charged with the task of finding a suitable use for the showpiece venue of the forthcoming Games.”

2012 London Olympic Precinct – Original Street Circuit Concept by iEDM (Vimeo)

Vettel: Red Bull too good for Ferrari to tempt me (The Telegraph)

“I’m flattered, but there has been no signal from me, I’ve not signed anything, nor agreed anything with a handshake. But if you asked the 24 drivers in Formula One if they would like to go to Ferrari in their career, all 24 would say ‘yeah’, and it is the same with me.”

Pirelli says teams to decide on hard tyre (Autosport)

“We feel that it would be unfair to suddenly alter one of the fundamental parameters that the teams have made a lot of effort to understand and get the most out of.”

Andrea Stella: “we have always maintained a positive attitude” (Ferrari)

“The car was good in Valencia, it was also good in Silverstone. And as Hockenheim is a mix of the slow speed of Valencia and high speed of Silverstone, I would expect Ferrari to be competitive in Germany.”

Grand Prix joker tried (The Age)

“A Melbourne court was told yesterday that after leaving the Albert Park track on March 26, Pearce got tired of walking and thought he would motor off in a $10,000 golf buggy.”

The Inside Line – on Mercedes? Nico Rosberg (F1)

“Q: What?s been your most valuable ??life? lesson?
NR: You always meet people twice in life. This has been true several times for me and I picked it up from Frank Williams as he split with BMW some years ago.”

Comment of the day

Jay Menon on Lewis Hamilton’s options for 2013:

I don’t think any driver should complain about his team to the media. Lewis has done this time and again. As driver, is it not one?s responsibility to work through the problems with the engineers and mechanics?

This is where I see stark difference between Lewis and the likes and Vettel and Alonso. I don’t recall either one of them ever complaining about their respective teams, even when faced with strategic or pit stop blunders (Alonso lost the drivers’ championship thanks Ferrari’s tactical clanger!).

And the results are there to be seen, in Ferrari?s case, they have improved by leaps and bounds. The team provides immense support to these drivers because they get the deserved respect and support.

They way I see it, if there is a problem, get on it and fix it. Lewis fancies comparison between his and Senna?s driving style, and in truth, there are similarities. They?re both natural racers and for the lack of a better description, go ‘balls to the wall’.

However, Senna was a deeply involved with the engineers and the mechanics, often staying late into the night with the team as they worked in garage, hence he had the respect and support of the team. I haven’t been privy to Lewis’s daily schedule, but based on his demeanour and conduct, I don’t get the feeling that he has a strong bond with his team and therein lies his downfall.

My personal opinion is that it would be good for Lewis to leave McLaren. I think he needs a new perspective. Obviously as many have said, the choices are limited. If Michael Schumacher relinquishes his seat, perhaps it might be the best place for him. Although Mercedes aren’t consistent just yet, I would watch this space because Ross Brawn is somebody that?s accustomed to winning, I’m sure he will crack the formula sooner or later.
Jay Menon

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to WizardOfOz!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Niki Lauda won the 1982 British Grand Prix at Brands Hatch ahead of Didier Pironi.

Pironi was briefly involved in an entertaining scrap for second place with Derek Warwick, driving the uncompetitive Toleman.

Warwick eventually retired with a technical problem just after half-distance, but there remained speculation the car had been deliberately under-fuelled in order to put on a competitive showing at home, and wouldn’t have finished anyway.

Here’s Warwick passing Pironi:

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107 comments on London Olympic circuit under official consideration

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  1. SoLiDG (@solidg) said on 18th July 2012, 0:17

    It might have been better if Lewis’ contract would end a year later (or he should do a Webber).
    2014 with major rule changes a jump to redbull or Mercedes might be a good bet.
    Knowing Ross Brawn and Adrian Newey’s way of doing the best job on the rules.
    But atm it looks like McLaren is the best option, altough they never gave him the best car (bar maybe 2007)

  2. Elliot Horwood . said on 18th July 2012, 0:19

    I really hope the London GP happens! will be so good and the track looks unique too

    • Chalky (@chalky) said on 18th July 2012, 8:54

      Sorry, but I disagree. This to me would be the closest GP to where I live and I’m a massive F1 fan, but I really do not want this bid to win. It’s a ‘make me do’ street circuit, that is jumping on the Olympic bandwagon. Motorsport is and will never be anything that I ever associate with the Olympics so therefore we have to look at the merits of the track design and location.
      Does London really need a GP?
      London does not need F1 for tourism. London already has plenty of attractions and history for tourists.
      The Olympic park should be re-used for Olympic sports and local sports facilities that encourage participation in sport, not a once a year F1 track.
      Britain already has one of the top F1 race circuits with Silverstone. Yes, there are some issues still, but Silverstone is world class.
      Like the Rome GP bid this track is more about the name than the track. I can’t see many places that would see a descent overtaking place.

      • mattshaw85 (@mattshaw85) said on 18th July 2012, 9:15

        Agree with this. I don’t mind the track, reminds me a bit of Melbourne, and I’m not against these types of races full stop, but it’s always going to be at the expense of a proper track in the long term. It’s a bit of a travesty when you see the likes of spa etc.. at risk, but then again – money talks doesn’t it. Makes me feel disillusioned with the whole sport to be honest.

        • To me the circuit looks ****, just another singapore.

          Street circuits have always looked really bland to me. Given most of the TV angles we get, we mostly just see’s lots of concrete walls, it could be anywhere on the planet.

          I can barly just put up with Monaco and Montreal.

      • topdowntoedown (@topdowntoedown) said on 18th July 2012, 11:22

        Totally agree. I pass the Olympic site every day (either on the tube or cycling) and there is no merit at all in having a GP there.

        The thing about having ‘the City skyline’ – it’s rubbish. Stratford is five miles of urban disinterest from the City, you might as well hold it in Greenwich.

      • jobymcanuff (@jobymcanuff) said on 18th July 2012, 11:32

        +1 totally agree

      • graham228221 (@graham228221) said on 18th July 2012, 13:10

        The Olympic park should be re-used for Olympic sports

        You’re wrong. The Olympic park is in one of the poorest parts of the country, and it desperately needs an idea that will stop this huge park becoming a Millennium Dome-style white elephant.

        Newham needs a world-class event, that will bring in tens of thousands of people into the area. A velodrome? A big swimming pool? Seriously, how many punters are these going to bring in outside of the Olympics? F1 would be a perfect marquee event for the Olympics, and I see absolutely no reason in that video why there can’t still be space for all the badminton, water polo and circuit cycling you can stomach – hell, there’d even be room for a football club to move into the stadium too as any Grand Prix would be during the football close season.

        It’s got the transport sorted, there’s more than enough space and you know it would be a sell out each and every year. If the rumours of an expanded calendar in the next Conchord Agreement are true, then it would be easy to fit in as you can run a double-header with Silverstone.

        Why is everyone always so negative!?!? It really bugs me, this seems to be the best chance of having an extra GP in Britain and everyone suddenly gets all cynical about it.

        • graham228221 (@graham228221) said on 18th July 2012, 13:11

          a perfect marquee event for the Olympics

          a perfect marquee event for the Olympic legacy – I meant of course.

          • paulipedia (@paulipedia) said on 19th July 2012, 21:05

            Only two things but I feel they are quite important. The Olympic Park is quite clearly not in one of the most poorest parts of the country, it’s in East London which is one of the most successful capitals of the world, also the Millennium Dome is now the o2 which is now one of the most successful sporting/music venues in the country, granted I hate it and it lacks personality.

            I do agree with you though, it would make a cracking venue and I could cycle there

          • graham228221 (@graham228221) said on 19th July 2012, 21:27

            The Olympic Park is quite clearly not in one of the most poorest parts of the country, it’s in East London which is one of the most successful capitals of the world

            @paulipedia

            Have you been to East London?! Newham is easily among the most deprived areas in the country: http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2011/mar/29/indices-multiple-deprivation-poverty-england – personally I love going there as it has some real character, but it has huge challenges. Go a couple of stops from the Olympic Park to somewhere like Forest Gate and you wouldn’t know that the world’s biggest sporting festival is taking place just across the way. You also wouldn’t guess that the world’s most powerful financial centre is a 15 minute train ride away.

            The Olympics will do some good towards regenerating the area, sure, particularly around the actual Park in Stratford, but really there’s only so much one isolated event will do in the longer term. An annual event like a Grand Prix is much more likely to bring solid, long term jobs to the area.

            the Millennium Dome is now the o2

            So, then, does London need another o2? ;) Besides, I don’t think any big media promoters are bidding.

            The problem is the Olympic Park has been thought through with the same flawed thinking as the Millenium Dome – build it, and worry about the ‘legacy’ later on. No real planning went into what was to be done after the games, and just like with the Dome no one is really sure what to do with it. In the current climate, would anyone be willing to spend that much money on redeveloping the stadium properly? The problem could be made worse by LOCOG’s various sporting requirements (keeping the athletics track etc).

            As I mentioned earlier, I’m pretty certain that one (or two) football clubs will be awarded use of the stadium itself and no doubt it will still be able to stage Madonna concerts occassionally. But there is still a huge (seriously, it is HUGE) Park with various oddly shaped buildings that I can’t really see getting much use between now and inevitable demolition and redevelopent.

            F1 fans should definitely get behind this idea!

          • paulipedia (@paulipedia) said on 19th July 2012, 21:57

            Easily the most deprived, minus the fact they now have some of the best facilities in the world, state of the art shopping centre, really cool canals and parks and property that is worth billions. OK yes there are poor poeple living there at the moment, but there is so much opportunity. Am not being facetious (although have had a couple of glases of wine, but some statistics from the Guardian mean nothing. Have you ever been to Bradford? there are so many poorer places in the UK that have nothing. Newham have so much now that you cannot possibly class it as poor. West Ham even went up!

        • Chalky (@chalky) said on 18th July 2012, 15:23

          Well the O2 Arena is not what I would call a White Elephant. It took a few years after, but I would say that it’s one of the best venues in London as an Arena. It also has a cinema / restaurants and nightclubs inside.

          My issue is that the UK is always crying out for better local facilities for grass roots sports. I would just prefer it to be used to give some kids the chance to do something. If it is the one of the poorest parts of the country, what better way to make it better than have sports that do not cost the earth to take part in.
          Perhaps a sports academy would suit this area better, bringing in year round jobs and prospects for the younger generation.

        • Joao Pitol (@roman) said on 19th July 2012, 6:43

          I agree Graham, I can’t understand why people are so negative all the time either.

          This video is about generating jobs in London and actually using the expensive site after the games have gone. How can anybody argue against that? Creating jobs and economic benefits, boo hoo.

          The track isn’t a real design it is a concept guys. London locals should be embracing concepts like this instead of always bashing everything.

      • Bernard (@bernard) said on 18th July 2012, 14:22

        No thanks. The circuit is simply not wide enough and would just become a high speed monaco.

        The Santander concept is much better in terms of racing potential.

  3. Tom Bisset (@pianoshizzle) said on 18th July 2012, 0:22

    Yet another temporary street circuit for yet another temporary investment. Before you know it, we will have more bland street circuits in the calendar than proper, permanent racing facilities.

    • Nick.UK (@) said on 18th July 2012, 21:51

      The ‘Olympic Circuit’ has less chance of being approved than London Zoo’s recent proposal to paint ‘The Gherkin’ like a penguin to attrack more visitors.

  4. Toby Bushby (@toby-bushby) said on 18th July 2012, 0:26

    Just want to say: That circuit looks rubbish. Just what F1 needs – another chicane-ridden, single file, 20-odd corner street circuit with zero overtaking opportunities due to tightening, wall-laden corner exits and start/stop, right-angled, so-called “straights”. Doesn’t exactly showcase London either, does it.

    So, I guess it’ll happen…. :P

    • Mark (@marlarkey) said on 18th July 2012, 1:19

      +1

      Its only being mooted because LOCOG have invited bids for what to do with the Olympic site…. this is one of 5 bids and its probably the least likely of the 5, mainly because this would be a once a year event adn LOCOG want legacy usage of the site… which each of the other 4 bids offer.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 18th July 2012, 2:37

      It is my understanding that the proposal shown here was not actually commissioned by the firm bidding for use of the Olympic Park.

      • JCost (@jcost) said on 18th July 2012, 12:07

        Same here.

        It would be the worst cicuit.

      • Joao Pitol (@roman) said on 19th July 2012, 6:35

        If you read their website they say it is a concept for tourism uses of the site after the games has gone. It’s about showcasing the site and making people talk. Everyone here is taking the design in the video way too seriously. As if they would release their real design proposal on Vimeo.

    • David-A (@david-a) said on 18th July 2012, 4:22

      It looks just as bad as the London Circuit in GT5.

    • Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 18th July 2012, 4:54

      Absolutely. It does look rubbish and has nothing to do with London.

      Silverstone is more London than the Olympics site… in London.

    • Mike (@mike) said on 18th July 2012, 5:06

      @toby-bushby

      Couldn’t have put it better myself.

    • KiwiUK (@kiwiuk) said on 18th July 2012, 7:02

      Spot on. It’s less than 90 miles from Silverstone so would likely compete with their sales, and they desperately need the money for future development of the circuit facilities.

      Also, adding a new street circuit could be at the expense of circuits such as Istanbul and Spa, which are much more exciting than a processional street race with the occasional DRS/Pirelli-related overtake.

    • Timothy Katz (@timothykatz) said on 18th July 2012, 8:09

      It does look particulalrly awful, doesn’t it?
      Another concrete-lined temporary facilty in a pointless public space. It has all the charm and interest of the Valencia circuit.

    • Jarv F150 (@jarvf150) said on 18th July 2012, 8:53

      Rubbish!
      6km will make it (I think) the second longest track, and with 20 stop-start corners it will take an age to drive around.

      Just imagine getting a puncture on the first corner too.

      • Mads (@mads) said on 18th July 2012, 9:35

        @jarvf150
        Nope, Spa is longer. It comes in at a hair width over 7km.
        But in comparison, Singapore has a lap that is 5km long. And that lap is just way, way too long. It feels like it takes the cars forever to get around.
        This circuit looks a little faster then Singapore, not Valencia fast though. So the lap times are probably going to be around, maybe a little longer then what they do in Singapore.

  5. Tyler (@tdog) said on 18th July 2012, 0:33

    I think we’ll see very few driver moves for 2013. To me, the most vulnerable are Massa (although I think Ferrari is more likely to keep him with an eye to the 2014 driver market), Senna (to be replaced by Bottas) and Pic (I think he’s doing a decent job, but maybe he’ll be replaced with yet another cashed up GP2 driver). Sheer weight of money will keep Karthikeyan and Petrov in their seats irrespective of performance. And as for Maldonado….

  6. wificats (@wificats) said on 18th July 2012, 0:56

    Just when we thought that the new deal for the Spanish GP was lessening the amount of Valencia that we have to put up with (the success of this year’s race was down to unreliability, not the layout), news comes that someone wants to create an even narrower, more overcomplicated and less inspiring track around the Olympic park. Fortunately no one will ever put up the money for it, and even if they do, it will likely founder on some planning technicality. As a British fan, I sincerely hope that this NEVER comes to be.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 18th July 2012, 17:52

      indeed, I am pretty sure there are better ways to spend money in that area, as well as better ways to use the olympic facilities (surely they claimed they had their long term purpose sorted long before building them?) and defenitely a lot better tracks to go racing on can be built, and its not needed with many a great track available in the UK

  7. TED BELL said on 18th July 2012, 0:57

    Although brilliant in its look and its location, it will never work…

    Is it even possible to make a pass on this layout?? I suspect that the only chance of moving up the grid will depend on how many cars crash out ahead of you. Thinking that this is the solution to Silverstone is nutty.

    Money is and has always been the key to the Grand Prix. Looks like this proposal is ripe to exploit the depths of ones wallet.

    Nice try London…a fable is but still a fable….it will never work and playing off the Olympics hype is square.

  8. Gogog said on 18th July 2012, 1:01

    Looking at the Stadium from the outside its just a white elephant with massive scrap metal value, football teams arent keen cause of the distance from the pitch to crowd an iits in the wrong place :-)
    Its just Bernie`s smoke an mirrors to butter up the `powers that be` nudge nudge wink wink :-)

  9. sato113 (@sato113) said on 18th July 2012, 1:05

    i thought the stadium itself was gonna be used? so maybe the track would have entered the stadium for a bit.

    • Mark (@marlarkey) said on 18th July 2012, 1:20

      That’s what I thought from the earlier publicity…. maybe they could put hte pits inside the stadium ? :)

    • Mike (@mike) said on 18th July 2012, 5:08

      That’s actually a really cool idea…

      So no it won’t happen.

      • BasCB (@bascb) said on 18th July 2012, 17:54

        Look at what Joe saward writes after looking at the possibilities to actually do that:

        The stadium is not very useful. It is set into the earth on an island, which means that the circuit would have to cross at least two bridges. It would have to enter the stadium below ground level. There are four tunnels that disappear into the stands, each is 10 metres wide. The average F1 track is 30 percent wider than that. Two of the four tunnels simply link with one another under the grandstands and go nowhere. The main tunnel in the north east of the stadium emerges with a small river right in front of it. To the right there is a narrow road then climbs up to reach the main public level. This would need to substantially widened if it was to be used by F1 cars.

    • timtoo (@timtoo) said on 18th July 2012, 15:25

      Although I agree with MJ4 that the Olympic circuit looks like it is Valencia 2, Just imagen if the start/finish straight was actually inside the stadium, how incredibly insanely awesome would that atmosphere be!?!?

  10. Tom (@newdecade) said on 18th July 2012, 1:23

    Frankly I think that track looks awful. More characterless, wall-bounded micro-straights connecting right angled corners too frequent and unambiguous to provide overtaking opportunities. The “chicanes” are simply left-right flicks that will simply space out cars that might go into them initially in close succession. Too much like singapore; far too much like valencia. The clue lies in the little legend that says “20 corners”.

  11. Calum (@calum) said on 18th July 2012, 1:29

    Well, Albert Park and Ile Notre-Dame are parkland settings which have fantastic F1 races! Not sure that London plan is the ideal circuit, but it would be some spectacle for the Olympics legacy having an F1 track in addition to all the facilities in the Olympic Park.

    I’d make some alterations to the track:
    1. Extend the start finish straight by getting rid of the bit which goes around the back of the Handball arena.
    2. Get rid of the fidly flyover/bridge section, replacing it with a single hairpin.

    Olympic Park track with alterations:
    http://desmond.imageshack.us/Himg837/scaled.php?server=837&filename=londonq.png&res=landing

    • Riley Smith (@weneeddunsfoldgp) said on 18th July 2012, 2:29

      I think that would be grand, but then it seems a little short/boring. It reminds me of a Monza/Silverstone/Valencia ******* child. How about this? (My track additions are in red).

    • nackavich (@nackavich) said on 18th July 2012, 2:47

      @calum I much prefer your layout, although it would be nice if the roads they built were designed in a way to get a hairpin following a longer straight. I like how your design is shorter too. Personally I HATE long street tracks (6km – seriously!) and if I were in the crowd so close to the action I’d rather have a shorter track where the cars do more laps, enabling the fans to see them more often. The 90 degree turns are annoying but hard to help that in a street circuit. I used to go to the Gold Coast Indy a lot and one of my favourite corners to sit and watch from was the 90 degree Turn 6 (I think) – plenty of courageous moves made there! But saying that, the “micro straights” don’t really set up the corners too well on this Olympic Park Circuit.

  12. Gogog said on 18th July 2012, 1:53

    If it were to happen i must say i would look forward to the Monaco/scaletrix cross over at mid lap.

  13. capu80 (@capu80) said on 18th July 2012, 2:10

    Erm, the Oz GP was on the 18th of March, so that guy must have had a hell of a celebration…. The Age F1-bashing at its best… pretty early in the season though….

  14. sumedh said on 18th July 2012, 2:11

    I am surprised by the negative feedback. I particularly liked the flat-out section with lot of high-speed turns around the track-and-field stadium.
    Single-file racing cannot be helped. And holds true for every circuit on the calendar – whether Tilke or non-Tilke. Because the fact of the matter there is only one fastest way of getting around any circuit.

  15. sumedh said on 18th July 2012, 2:13

    But if you asked the 24 drivers in Formula One if they would like to go to Ferrari in their career, all 24 would say ‘yeah’, and it is the same with me.

    I remember a COTD the day after Webber re-signed with Red Bull which talked about how the lure of Ferrari has gone down. That quote by Vettel throws that argument out of the window, doesn’t it?

    • Journeyer (@journeyer) said on 18th July 2012, 2:43

      Ah, but back in the day, drivers would’ve dropped EVERYTHING to sign with Ferrari. It’s still a great option now, but it’s no longer an AUTOMATIC option.

    • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 18th July 2012, 11:05

      I don’t see that it blows my comment out of the water. If anything, Vettel’s comments reflect my own, when you look at the context in which they were made; yes, lots of drivers would love to drive for ferrari, but I’m staying put because this is where the championships are being won.

      Seems reasonable to me. Drivers don’t want to automatically jump into the red car without considering the impact it’ll have on their career. Look at it this way, if just given the option between driving for Ferrari and, say, Sauber, it’s clear most would opt for Ferrari. But these days if someone said Ferrari or Red Bull? How about Ferrari or McLaren? I don’t think the decision would be made solely on the basis that every driver would love to drive for Ferrari. Drivers want to go where they think they’ll be successful, not just arbitrarily make up the numbers, even if they are driving for the most prestigious outfit on the grid. The fact that Webber and Vettel are both indicating they’d rather stay at Red Bull backs this up, regardless whatever they may personally feel about Ferrari.

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