Corner Names: Should more racetracks have them?
Written by Vyas Ponnuri, Edited by Ishani Aziz
There are many iconic corners in Formula 1, some remembered more by their names over the corner number on the track. Most of us remember corners by their names such as Stowe, Maggots & Becketts, Copse, Eau Rouge & Raidillon, Sainte Devote, Senna S, La Source, and so on.
These corners, while being known to provide enthralling action throughout the weekend, do also derive their names from certain landmarks, localities, and even the undulation and curvature of the track. Certain corners have been named after famous drivers as well, such as the Senna S at Interlagos, the Schumacher Esses at Nurburgring, and the Jochen Rindt Curve and Niki Lauda Curve at Austria.
Fans can associate with the corners on racetracks, and perhaps, recall famous moments from previous races at the track. They can also understand the significance of the corner name. For instance, we can all recall the various wheel-to-wheel battles between many drivers as they went into Stowe Corner at Silverstone, but why was it called Stowe corner? The corner derives its name from a nearby landmark: Stowe school, which lies just South of the circuit. Similarly, Rascasse corner in Monaco derives its name from the, “La Rascasse” bar, which is on the inside of the corner. Turns four and five on the Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace, or better known as Interlagos, in Brazil, are named, “Descida De Lago” (Lake Descent) and “Mergulho” (Dive), after the undulations on the track. While most fans can recollect these corners with relative ease, they can even learn a bit of history relating to the place too.
The older tracks such as Silverstone, Monza, Monaco, Interlagos, Catalunya, Spa Francorchamps, and Suzuka have named their corners. Some racetracks, such as Silverstone, Singapore, and Canada have names for their straights as well, such as the Hamilton, Wellington, and Hangar straights at Silverstone. Raffles Boulevard and Esplanade Drive in Singapore, take the name of their respective streets. The more recent tracks aren’t known for having named their corners, though. Should they follow suit? While it isn’t compulsory for all tracks to name their corners, it would be better for them to, so that fans can learn more about the locality of the racetrack, and recall the iconic moments at a certain corner as well.