High-speed layout returns to Spanish GP to aid overtaking

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By Luke-John Buckle

This year’s Spanish Grand Prix will feature a different configuration at the Circuit De Barcelona-Catalunya.

The track will remove the Turn 14 and 15 chicane and return to the original layout at the end of the lap in a bid to improve overtaking.

The final chicane was brought in for the 2007 season for safety reasons, replacing the prior layout which cars tackled two high-speed sweeping left handers.

A circuit spokesperson said: “Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya has been homologated both with and without the chicane for the rest of the motor racing competitions that use the Grand Prix layout.

“It will be up to each promoter or championship to decide which one will be used in each case.”

To run without the chicane the circuit were required to tweak the run-off area and safety systems at the turn including a new TECPRO barrier to meet FIA Grade 1 circuit safety standards.

Alongside the significant changes to the final sector of the lap, the run-off at Turn 1 has been widened as well as the scoreboard on the pit exit being remodelled.

“A first phase of works has already been completed there, which has enlarged the area with 70 metres of gravel and a slope of approximately 5% and has installed a new FIA fence protecting turns 1 and 2, thus significantly improving the safety of the drivers and riders,” said the circuit.

“Something that will catch the attention of the participants, but also of the spectators, is the remodelling of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya scoreboard, located at the pit lane exit.

“This season, the Circuit will have a new signalling tower, a much more modern one that will continue to add character to one of the most iconic points of the facilities.”

The Spanish Grand Prix is round eight of the season and will be held on the 4th of June.

Photo: Circuit de Catalunya