Spa veloce come non mai: riflettori su Pouhon

Spa as fast as ever: spotlight on Pouhon |

The 2022 edition of the Belgian Grand Prix will be the first in the Formula 1 world championship to be held with major Announcements implemented on the circuit Spa-Francorchamps. From this year, in fact, the famous circuit will present changes on and off the track, while maintaining its layout unchanged. Thanks to a restructuring investment of 80 million euros, the route has been entirely resurfaced in five curves, in order to improve safety standards also to welcome the return of motorcycle racing.

Outside of this objective focused on the world of two wheels, the track has been retouched in some historical points such as theEau Rouge-Raidillon, mainly, here too, to increase safety conditions. In this section, in fact, in recent years there have been some serious accidents in the GT and W Series, although the most dramatic remains the one dating back to 2019, the season in which Anthoine Hubert lost his life during the Formula 2 race. made for this sector, also the curve of Pouhon has undergone interventions, as well as the addition of the gravel outside various points, which will no longer be characterized by the asphalt escape route.

Circuit safer and closer to modern standards – including the addition of a new grandstand outside the Eau Rouge – but also faster: this is confirmed by the Italian designer Jarno Zaffelli, that is the one who directed the operations on the Belgian circuit. According to the Emilian engineer, the new features of Spa-Francorchamps will help to lower the times of the F1 cars compared to previous seasons, as explained in an interview reported by “In the lap times we’ve seen so far, GT cars have gained 1.7 seconds – states – ithe fact is that, even though we haven’t changed the route, the quality of the resurfacing work carried out by local contractors has seen a huge improvement ”.

Going more specifically, Zaffelli explained the main operations that will help make the circuit faster also in F1: “Now the Eau Rouge is really smooth – he added – it is no longer something that puts the vehicle in crisis. The goal is to challenge the driver without exposing him to unnecessary risks. It is at its best in the modern era. In other parts of the track, too, the roughness is very low and grip levels have increased. When taking the ‘Jacky Ickx’ turn, you enter the Pouhon faster. I received a lot of comments from the riders who told me they changed the corner. I replied that the layout was the same. Before they entered the curve by delaying the point of the apex, now they anticipate it, but they could not understand why the line was changed. Before there were two bumps due to a collapsed tube: we removed them, and now they can bring more speed into corners. That’s why we think that the lap time of Formula 1 will not be very different from that of previous years. Today the cars are 1-2 seconds slower, but they will be counterbalanced by the faster track. I think the riders will have fun ”.

FP | Alessandro Prada


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