A lap of Imola with Button

BAR's Jenson Button describes a lap of Imola "Imola has a fantastic atmosphere that is almost electric, so it's always enjoyable to race there. The circuit itself is a tricky one. It's a combination of quick straights and tight chicanes so it's...

BAR's Jenson Button describes a lap of Imola

"Imola has a fantastic atmosphere that is almost electric, so it's always enjoyable to race there. The circuit itself is a tricky one. It's a combination of quick straights and tight chicanes so it's really difficult to get a good rhythm. It's anti-clockwise too!"

Jenson Button.
Photo by LAT Photographic.

"From the start the pit straight is pretty short but you can get up to top gear and speeds of around 285kmh. This takes you into the first corner, Tamburello, where you hit the brakes hard and get down into third gear to take the chicane. You ride the kerbs a lot more here than any other track so you need to have a strong car."

"Up through the gears again along a short straight to the next chicane, Villeneuve. We get up to about 285kmh here so again it's hard on the brakes before attacking the chicane. It's a particularly bumpy bit of the track through here with little grip so you have to get the rhythm just right."

"Off again now along an even shorter straight up to Tosa, which is effectively a long, second gear hairpin. It's important to carry good speed out of Tosa to attack the uphill run to Piratella, which we take in fourth gear and about 170 kmh. Heavy G-loads here. It's then back downhill into Aqua Minerale, which is a tricky one as you have to brake as you turn in."

"The next straight takes you to the Variante Alta chicane. It's a pretty quick, third gear chicane and you have to go high on the kerbs here - it's a real handful. Onto the back straight which is downhill. We get up to top gear again and around 290kmh. Quite a long braking area into Rivazza, a double left-hander with not much grip, taken in third gear."

"Then it's a quick run along the Variante Bassa straight before the last chicane, Traguardo, taken in second gear. You need a perfect exit from this last chicane to get a good run at the start/finish straight but it's tricky as the track is always dusty here. Hopefully though you get a clean exit and away you go for another lap of Imola."

-bar-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jenson Button