F1 working with Russian GP bosses on possible Sochi track changes

Russian Grand Prix organisers are in talks with Formula 1 chiefs and the FIA about making changes to the Sochi circuit to improve overtaking possibilities

F1 working with Russian GP bosses on possible Sochi track changes

The twisty layout of the Sochi Autodrom, allied to the very smooth track surface, has resulted in a lack of exciting racing since it joined the F1 calendar in 2014.

With F1 bosses eager to lift excitement levels, thought is being given to changing some of the tracks on the calendar.

Last year, Ross Brawn even singled out Sochi's smooth track surface as something that could need addressing if the venue was to produce better racing.

"If you look at circuits with very low [tyre] degradation, like Sochi, the racing there is challenging and it is one-stop," he said.

"The tyres don't go off, so away you go. There are no performance differentials created."

Now, Sochi's new race promoters have revealed that they are evaluating what they can do to help the situation.

And although they have ruled out changing the track layout itself, they have hinted that a different asphalt type, or making some corners wider, may be enough to help improve matters.

Alexey Titov, the CEO of the Rosgonki company that has taken over the Russian Grand Prix, told Autosport that talks about what to do are advancing.

"Fans know that because of the layout of the Sochi Autodrom, it is a bit short on overtaking," he said.

"That is why we are working with [F1 race director] Charlie Whiting, the FIA and FOM very closely.

"We want to try to change the situation by making some small technical tweaks.

"You won't necessarily see these from the grandstands or on the television, but we hope these tweaks will improve the sporting side of the races and we will have more overtaking.

"Theoretically it could be anything from widening or narrowing some parts of the track, to changing the asphalt which will affect the tyres differently. This can force teams to use different tactics."

Pushed on the timetable to make the changes, Titov said: "I don't think it's for 2018. But we're exploring these ideas. We are thinking about improving the situation."

shares
comments
Renault could need two or three years to make big F1 gains - Hulkenberg

Previous article

Renault could need two or three years to make big F1 gains - Hulkenberg

Next article

Red Bull fears bigger Mercedes engine advantage in 2018 F1 season

Red Bull fears bigger Mercedes engine advantage in 2018 F1 season
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Jordan King
Author Yaroslav Zagorets
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Plus

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes Plus

The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Bahrain Grand Prix despite, for a change, not having the quickest car. But any hopes of developing its W12 to surpass Red Bull's RB16B in terms of outright speed could not have come at a worse time.

Formula 1
Apr 2, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his team-mate's F1 career climb Plus

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his team-mate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen’s emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber team-mate’s own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here’s how Nick Heidfeld’s career was chilled by the Iceman

Formula 1
Apr 1, 2021