French GP says Paul Ricard overtaking tweaks would take "four days"

Formula 1 French Grand Prix organisers say Paul Ricard changes to improve overtaking could be made "in four days" once approved by the FIA

French GP says Paul Ricard overtaking tweaks would take "four days"

As Autosport reported back in December, Paul Ricard believes the racing spectacle can be made better if tweaks are made to the first section of its track.

The event's new managing director Eric Boullier told selected media, including Autosport at an event in Paris on Monday, that plans have been submitted to the FIA and the hope is that the revamp can be ready in time for this year's race.

"We've been working for several months now, and we're at the final stage," said Boullier.

"We have made a track change request following all the work that has been done with FOM.

"There has been a lot of back and forth simulation work with FOM, and things are well advanced as there's a version that's now in the homologation stage with the FIA."

The proposal is for the tight first sequence of corners to be opened up, which will then deliver a much bigger first braking point at the Sainte-Baume area of the circuit.

"That would make two big straights [here and the back straight], and two overtaking zones," said Boullier.

"In any case, on the simulations, the cars are clearly getting closer, and if you can't get past at Sainte-Baume, you'll do it at the first chicane.

"The idea is also to force the teams to have less downforce."

While Paul Ricard is eager for the changes to happen, they need to get signed off by the FIA first.

And although no final decision has been made on that front, there is no urgent rush for a call on that yet.

When asked how long the track changes would take to be made, Boullier said: "Four days' work, or more precisely four nights."

Boullier also reiterated that the chicane on the back straight, which has delivered overtaking opportunities over the past two years, would stay in place.

"We're keeping the chicane, of course. You must know that if you want some overtaking, you have to make 90-degree turns and, at the end of the straight, it's a flatout corner.

"So there's little chance of [overtaking] happening there. The layout we want will favour a second overtaking zone."

shares
comments
Renault signs 15-year-old French F4 champion as F1 junior driver

Previous article

Renault signs 15-year-old French F4 champion as F1 junior driver

Next article

Get the best seats in the house for the 2020 F1 French GP

Get the best seats in the house for the 2020 F1 French GP
Load comments
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Plus

Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates Plus

Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates

For the second time in 2021, McLaren will line up for the start of a grand prix from the first row. It knows it has the chance of “glory” if things go well for Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris at the start of the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, but even if they just maintain their grid positions, signs from the rest of the Monza weekend suggest success is very possible for Formula 1’s other orange army

Formula 1
Sep 12, 2021
The F1 media favourite who lifted a broken Lotus Plus

The F1 media favourite who lifted a broken Lotus

Graham Hill was nearly 30 when he made his Formula 1 debut. NIGEL ROEBUCK examines the life of a gifted racer whose talismanic personality defined an era

Formula 1
Sep 11, 2021