The host of the French GP, Circuit Paul Ricard, has gone through a major resurfacing and reprofiling programme following the confirmation of the 2021 Formula 1 calendar. This covers the majority of the 5,8-kilometer track and all 15 corners except Signes. The rework was overseen by Zandvoort and Silverstone reworker, Studio Dromo.
Written By Hafiz Akbar, Edited By Umut Yelbaşı
With changes having to be made inside of the current layout’s limits, the task grows harder for the Italian circuit design bureau. Citing racefans.net, Dromo owner Jarno Zaffelli stated,
“We had the requirements to fix some corners from an asphalt perspective and while we were there, we said ‘Ok, let’s do the maximum that we can do within the boundaries that we have’,” he said to RaceFans. “It was more or less like Silverstone, we had to stay within that layout.”
He further stated that his team is applying the same methodology that they’ve applied in Silverstone’s 2019 rework, slightly reprofiling the corners that they’ve resurfaced, except turn 10 which remains unaltered. The most notable change occurs in turn 5, which is now a slow right-hander with increased chance of overtakes and more crested to allow better drainage, with last year’s plans to aid overtaking in the first sector having been put on hold.
Zaffelli commented that after the rework, the track should feel smoother than the last time it was used for F1 races, which was in 2019. Other than the racing surfaces, the pit lane entry was also resurfaced and had a bump removed.
Despite the restrictions imposed by the circuit management, Zaffelli said that there is a considerable scope for improvement and he hopes that the resurfaced track will make racing in the French circuit far more exciting when Formula 1 eventually returns.