Drivers need to be punished for their mistakes a lot more than they do already, although this doesn’t make an exciting race track.
If you think back to the Abu Dhabi GP last year when Alonso was trying everything to pass Petrov, he was making moves that put him off the track and onto the run off area. He would have been less likely to make these moves with gravel which would have made the battle less exciting surely? The problem here was the track design, on the face of it Abu Dhabi looks like quite a good circuit, its got some fast flowing corners at the start reminiscent of Suzuka into a tight hairpin with a long straight, then it’s got a great techincal section. The problem is, as we all know, it lacks overtaking opportunities.
You mentioned the fact they have become safe, and we often hear Martin Brundle describe circuits as sanitised, like Spa the other weekend. Is gravel the best option, because we hear that cars dig in and roll, or just glide over the top.
I remember reading about slowing the cars down when they go off track, by some means of a computer device limiting the speed, like you get in computer games. Surely this could be possible at some point in the near future?