New barriers bring walls close to F1 action

F1's newest circuit features notably less run-off than at many of the sport's other modern venues. Providing a closer view for spectators at the new Yas Marina layout in Abu Dhabi, this has been possible due to the extensive use of ...

F1's newest circuit features notably less run-off than at many of the sport's other modern venues.

Providing a closer view for spectators at the new Yas Marina layout in Abu Dhabi, this has been possible due to the extensive use of polyethylene foam-filled energy-absorbing barriers, otherwise known as 'Tecpro'.

Tecpro barriers have already been used at circuits including Singapore, Barcelona and Monza, but it is the first time a modern circuit has been built without expansive areas of run-off for safety.

David Coulthard recently got a close-up view of the new facility, to host this weekend's 2009 season finale, and thinks the proximity of the walls is a good thing.

"There has to be a penalty for going off a circuit. It should not be a big crash that ends up hurting you, but there has to be a price to pay.

"And I think this track has redefined the FIA safety standards because of the safety barriers," said the former Grand Prix driver.

However, the Scot is less impressed by the "silly" pitlane exit, which includes a cornered section that runs underground.

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Series Formula 1
Drivers David Coulthard