Track designs are less fun?

This topic contains 19 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  Francorchamps 4 years ago.

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    Is it me or are track designs becoming so safe and so well planned out that it actually detracts from the race?

    I remember a time when a run off would be gravel and your race would be over.

    I visited Yas Marina for the opening race and I couldn’t believe the space given to making mistakes. I reckon half the cars wouldn’t have finished if there was gravel there.

    It just gets me thinking, we have seen that Lewis has his moments of going off track because he pushes the car so much, but would he be where he is now in the points if most mistakes led to the end of his race? Perhaps he would calm down and therefore be less competitive. Don’t get me wrong, I like Lewis but I think when you watch the driving of Webber or Button (Vettel to a degree whilst leading) you will see far less mistakes.

    Whats your thoughts?



    Modern track design is rubbish because everything that makes a track great has been restricted so much by the FIA.



    I will reserve some judgement until I see what India is like. America also has the potential to be a great circuit, but it needs to look it too. Few circuits are inspiring to look at, or have the atmosphere of older ones. Silverstone is a bit desolate looking, but it has the atmosphere and a nice layout. Places like Malaysia, Bahrain, and even Turkey all look the same in some way, even though they are in completely different surroundings.



    What beneboy said although Silverstone showed that there is some room to play and that track changes/design can be fun. It would help if Tilke wasn’t used so much as at least then there might be a slight chance of some variety but mostly the rules need to be loosened up.


    Ned Flanders

    I have a weird nostalgia for the days when drivers often used to retire beached in the gravel. It seems a long time ago now.

    When was the last time that actually happened? The last one I can recall off the top of my head was Felipe Massa at Sepang 2008, though I’m sure it has happened a few times since


    Antony Butler


    Jenson got beached in qualifying of the 2010 malaysia race, he made it into Q2, but went off so couldn’t finish. Other than that i cant remember it happening.



    Not quite beached in gravel, but Alonso got trapped on a curb in Montreal this year.



    As Zadak once said…

    Drivers getting beached in gravel is the worst way they can go out, it’s not nessecary to stop them like that, it’s probably the least spectacular way a driver can retire from a session, and that is very bad for spectators.

    If a driver goes off and his car is in good working order he should be able to get back on. How quickly he does so is a different matter, using speedbumps or covering the runoff area in honey would be better than gravel.



    @Ned I can think of these:

    – Bourdais, Sepang 2008

    – Kubica, Silverstone 2008

    – Coulthard and Vettel, Silverstone 2008 (unless there was damage from the crash)

    – Kovalainen, Sepang 2009



    If a driver can’t stay on the track then there should be a chance he can’t continue. If there were a wall there he might not, the reason for gravel/run-off/ grass is purely safety, or at least should be.



    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?


    Ned Flanders

    I’ve just remembered that Petrov got beached in the 2010 Australian GP



    Didn’t he repeat that in Malaysia?



    I think it should go grass, tarmac, gravel in order from the edge of the track. Therefore they have something really slippy that will lose them time if they are too aggressive, have something to save them after they’ve slipped and then somehting to slow them down further if they are out of control. That way, they’ll spin if they get it wrong but in most cases be able to rejoin, thus making it have a slowing effect on their race instead of them just being able to carry on as if nothing had happened! And then line the barriers with those plastic things as well!



    *plastic things = tecpro, it just popped back into my head!

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