F1 must treat Indy with respect, says track boss

Indianapolis Motor Speedway president Tony George has warned Formula 1's teams and drivers that they must treat Grand Prix racing's newest track with maximum respect

F1 must treat Indy with respect, says track boss

Sunday's United States Grand Prix will be run on a 2.607-mile circuit that combines IMS's banked Turn 1 (Turn 13 on the GP circuit) and start-finish straight with a twisting infield section.

Turn 13 is expected to be taken flat at 200mph with the cars touching 225mph at the end of the start-finish straight. Engines will be held on full throttle for 1.8km - compared to 1.2km at Hockenheim - before the cars brake hard for the second gear first corner.

F1 tyre-supplier Bridgestone has produced special, ultra-durable tyres for the race, and the teams are confident that suspensions will cope with the prolonged high loadings through Turn 13. But just two weeks after Monza's opening lap accident, in which a marshal died, George says that the teams and their drivers should adopt a sensible approach for their first weekend in Indiana.

"Indianapolis has always commanded a different type of respect just because of the sheer speed of the facility," said George in an exclusive interview in this week's Autosport magazine. "Negotiating the oval is one thing, but the road course is new for everybody. There isn't one person here who is going to have any more experience than the others.

"Everyone needs to be cautious in their approach to this first event and use it as a test session in a way. The teams need to really be attentive to the information that the tyre manufacturers provide and they need to be respectful, as I am sure they are at every circuit they go to."

George believes the challenge of Turn 13 has been "over-dramatised" and says he is confident that the circuit's safety facilities are up to the job.

"Safety is always the most important element of our preparation," he said. "While you can't say that you have covered every possible scenario from happening that could cause accidents, injuries or even fatalities, you would like to think that with 90 years of history here we have seen quite a bit. We like to feel that we have a good circuit for the competitors, officials and spectators."

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