F1 circuit designer Tilke defends Sochi layout after Russian GP

Formula 1 track designer Hermann Tilke insists the layout of the Sochi circuit was not to blame for the lack of thrills in the Russian Grand Prix

F1 circuit designer Tilke defends Sochi layout after Russian GP

The inaugural event at the Sochi Autodrom produced one of the least exciting races of the season, and Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg's one-two finish secured Mercedes the 2014 F1 constructors' championship.

Tilke believes that circumstances - including Pirelli's conservative tyre choice - were bigger factors than the track configuration that ran around the Olympic Park.

He cites the fact that Rosberg was able to come from the back of the field to finish second as evidence that the design was good for overtaking, even if the order was settled relatively early on.

When asked if he reckoned change to the layout was needed for 2015, Tilke told AUTOSPORT: "No, I think it is fine. It works.

"The first few laps were great for overtaking, but afterwards the field was sorted. Nico was able to do a great job to come from the back to second place, and there was some other overtaking in the midfield.

"But of course if the fastest driver is in front of the slowest driver, then not so much happens."

Although Pirelli's choice to bring the soft and medium tyre was acknowledged as conservative, Tilke thinks it was understandable considering the track was new.

"I think Pirelli were a little bit conservative because they were afraid of what happens with the new track," he said. "Hopefully next year they make a different strategy.

"But everyone has to test first and not face a big risk, because they don't want to have five pitstops."

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