In addition to the concerts, parties and promotional events, there is an F1 GP in Miami over the weekend. And the stage deserves some attention. Set up in the parking lot of a stadium, the 12th American circuit to host a race in the category is made up of two very different sections.
Its creator himself compared it to a classic of world literature (and slapstick comedy): “The Doctor and the Monster”.
“Our aim was to create a challenge for the F1 teams: their cars, their engineers and, of course, their drivers,” said engineer Charles Metcalfe, who designed the track. “The circuit has a wide range of curves, at low and high speeds, and we did a lot of simulation work to make sure that the setup that works in one sector will not be ideal for the other. Monster,'” he concluded.
If you’ve never read the book, no problem. If you are over 40, you must have watched “The Nutty Professor” with Jerry Lewis in some “Afternoon Session”. The engineer’s allusion to the work has this meaning: to show that Miami is a circuit with a dual personality.
Hiring Metcalfe’s company to design the circuit is also a novelty. And a bet. Apex Circuit Design is English and has its base 50 km from Silverstone. He has designed and built several tracks around the world, in countries such as China, Australia, Finland, Nicaragua, Russia and Cambodia. Now experience its highest flight: the first time in F1.
The circuit is 5,412 m long, has 19 corners and runs counterclockwise – with Interlagos, Austin, Baku, Abu Dhabi and Singapore, for example, a minority on the calendar. There will be three DRS zones and an estimated maximum speed of 330 km/h at the end of the straight, at the end of the lap.
While not accelerating on the track, the pilots also dedicated themselves to simulators to try to understand what lies ahead in the coming days. And most liked it.
“It looks amazing. I really liked the layout. There are a lot of bull curves, some of them very different, very long,” said Gasly. “It has a very winding stretch that is difficult to hit. And visibility can be difficult,” said Pérez. Tsunoda gave a nice definition: “The final part looks like a Formula E track, the corners are very tight”.
Thursday in Miami was for terrain reconnaissance, with pilots and engineers walking along the track and photographing some more tricky sections. It was also to see some new features displayed by the teams in front of the pits.
Mercedes appeared with smaller rear wings and a new front spoiler. McLaren also worked on the aerodynamics of the front of the car and brought to Miami two sets of wings with different configurations. At Ferrari, the big news is under the fairing: Leclerc will have at his disposal the evolution of the engine that has already been tried out by Sainz at Imola.
And there was also good news for fans of “Drive To Survive”: Liberty and Netflix announced a new contract guaranteeing two more seasons of the series. The fact that the announcement was made on American soil is no coincidence…
The schedule for the fifth round of the Worlds is here, in the fine line of the pilotoons: