F1 drivers react to 2021 Barcelona track changes

Several Formula 1 drivers have discussed the Barcelona track alteration, with some feeling it could improve overtaking into Turn 1 at the expense of passes at the reprofiled Turn 10.

F1 drivers react to 2021 Barcelona track changes

The Turns 10/11 sequence has been significantly altered ahead of this year's Spanish Grand Prix, a move made to improve safety that has been carried out in conjunction with the FIA and FIM.

Turn 10, at the end of the track's back straight, has returned to a similar layout to its original design – a longer, flowing left-hander that feeds directly into Turn 11 along the same curve, unlike the previous version used since 2004 that was a tight-left near-hairpin that fed into a more pronounced Turn 11 left.

Speaking in the part of the pre-2021 Spanish GP press conference that he shared with Charles Leclerc, AlphaTauri driver Pierre Gasly said of the changes: "Honestly, I don't have the answer now because we haven't tried it yet, but it doesn't make the straight line a lot longer.

"Clearly, I think there will be slightly more lines possible out of Turn 10, so I do hope racing improves, and it gives us the opportunity to put a bit of pressure on braking and maybe try something different on exit and overtake.

"[That would] give us a bit more opportunities in terms of racing, but in terms of driving, yeah, it's mostly a bit more open, a bit faster corner."

Read Also:

Ferrari's Carlos Sainz agreed with Gasly that the changes would allow drivers to take different lines through Turn 10 when following another car.

He said: "In the past, Turn 10 was obviously very difficult to follow a car in front [through] – just because there was only one line.

"There is a strong point [about the changes] – that maybe having a wider line [now], you can maybe place your car a bit differently compared to a car in front and get a bit more clean air.

"But, at the same time, it's a higher speed corner, [where] we will feel the downforce loss if we follow. One thing might compensate the other."

Charles Leclerc said he was "not so sure", when following on directly from Gasly's comments.

"I mean, I'm pretty sure that there will be different lines there and that should be a bit better to follow, but I also feel that Turn 10 was an opportunity to overtake, so I don't know," said the Ferrari driver.

"I think there will be less overtaking in Turn 10, but if then it helps us to follow closer for overtaking before Turn 1, then that's great."

Alpine racer Fernando Alonso says he does not it expect the changes to mean "that it will change much" in terms of racing action this weekend.

"Honestly, the corner was there anyway in the past," he explained.

"So sometimes, if you braked a little bit late into 10, you take that runoff area and you re-joined the track in 12.

"So, I don't that it's going to be a huge impact on the laptime, on the set-ups, on the overtaking possibilities – I think it's pretty similar.

"It should be quite transparent from outside or from the spectators' point of view."

shares
comments

Related video

Williams rear end issue hampered Russell’s F1 race in Portimao

Previous article

Williams rear end issue hampered Russell’s F1 race in Portimao

Next article

Hamilton wins third Laureus Award for social activism

Hamilton wins third Laureus Award for social activism
Load comments
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Prime

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. Damien Smith brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1.

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Prime

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus Prime

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Prime

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Prime

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences.

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Prime

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...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Prime

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