Singapore eases bumps after complaints

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The Singapore Grand Prix organisers have taken steps to reduce the bumpiness of the circuit.

The track has been re-surfaced to ease the bumps between turns three and seven and at turns 14 and 19.

Drivers had complained about the bumps at the first two races. Ahead of this weekend’s race Nick Heidfeld said:

It will be interesting to see how the situation with the bumps has developed. In this regard, the track got worse from 2008 to 2009 and it was said this would be sorted out.
Nick Heidfeld

The pit lane has been lowered by 1cm and resurfaced to make it easier for cars re-joining the track.

Turn 10 now has revised kerbs. The organisers say this is to create “a more gradual curve in order for the drivers to make safer exits from the chicane.”

In addition to the track changes the walls around the circuit have been painted blue, green and yellow. The run-off areas will be painted red, white and yellow.

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    62 comments on “Singapore eases bumps after complaints”

    1. NOOOOO Thats not good

      1. It means more overtaking :)

        Drivers wont risk overtaking at a bumpy corner.

    2. Fair enough, Not overly pleased but I suppose as a McLaren fan every little helps. Redbull are going to walk this one anyway I suspect.

      Let it rain for the race please?

      1. Hasn’t thought about the McLaren angle – might well be good news for them.

        1. Same thing I was thinking about! Definitely a good thing for McLaren!

          Red Bull will definitely walk this away. The question is, who’s gonna cross the finish line after them, McLaren or Ferrari!?

          1. Or maybe Renault?

        2. Definite sigh of relief for McLaren. If the job’s actually been done properly.

      2. Always look on the bright side of life, eh.

        I suppose it is good news for them and most drivers will like it as well.

        From what I heard it might rain during the weekend, with Thunderstorms in the area.

        1. Looks like the forecast for Sunday night though is just overcast. Most of the chances of thunderstorms are mid-day.

      3. Wasn’t Vettel caught out by a “bump” at Spa?

        1. You mean Button’s car? I think Webber was caught out by a “bump” in Valencia too. A Finnish bump.

      4. How does this help Mclaren?

        1. Mclaren haven’t beent hat great over bumps I don’t think. If I remember correctly I believe at Silverstone Brundle said it was as “stiff as a skateboard”

        2. McLaren have a massive diffuser, which is great for when everythings working perfectly at high speed, peak downforce must be great. However that situation never occurs and it’s so complex the air often gets detached or turbulent and downforce is lost.

          To try and stop this from happening McLaren have made the suspension as stiff as bricks, meaning their performance over a weekend often rests on them getting the car set up right straight of all they’ll just struggle over the bumps and with rear downforce all weekend, bumps do not help the cause, though of course they managed it in Turkey.

    3. wonder why the changes are only announced days before the Grand Prix weekend…

      1. Because the press is only listening then. I believe easing bumps is a long time decision (it is after all a street circuit)

    4. Are these guys Formula 1 drivers, or do they belong in a nursing home because the bumps are making their arthritis play up.

      Man up, princess!

      1. This coming from a keyboard warrior?

        1. ouchy… touché though i might add ;)

        2. no, but coming from someone who’d like to see those 24 guys earn their ridiculously huge wages by withstanding any impediment correlated to the sport of which they would be well aware of

          1. I’d like to make the point that it is not 24 guys out to make a huge amount of money,. There are a bunch of drivers who already have the money, and are getting rid of it by paying to drive an F1 car. Therefore in order to make their bit of excitement as pleasurable as possible, the bumps have to be removed. So have sympathy for these thrillseekers, and allow the Singapore GP team remove the bumps so it doen’t spoil the rich kids’ weekend.

            1. “There are a bunch of drivers who already have the money, and are getting rid of it by paying to drive an F1 car”


        3. Thats Captain Keyboard Warrior to you!

          Kind of agree though.

    5. Big shame. I hope there’s still some evidence of them. It was an incredible spectacle seeing those modern day cars sparking!!!

    6. Dont worry, guys… I live in Singapore and no amount of re-surfacing will be enough to smooth up the bumps preceding Turn 7 – thousands of vehicles have pounded that stretch of road each day!

      1. Thanks for the positive news than. I was feeling they managed to get the real street feeling out of it.

      2. And we just had a few thousand tons of military hardware go by last month…

        Anyway would a smoother surface be more advantageous to Red Bull, seeing how they can run much closer to the ground? A few bumps here and there might make level (pun intended) the playing field between the RBRs and the Maccas…

        1. Opposite in fact, Redbull has prooved it has massive downforce whatver the situation whereas the McLaren can suffer over the bumps.

    7. Anyone got any pictures of the newly painted walls and run off areas?

      1. The teams haven’t even arrived yet! They generally don’t set up until Wednesday at the earliest.

        1. If it is a street circuit the set up a long time in advance.

          As a long time Adelaide resident it brings back painful memories of loooong traffic delays caused weeks out from the race as they got everything in place…

          1. And who is there to photograph them? The people who take pictures of the racing generally follow the racing. Unless you’re hoping some random Singaporeite is a member of the community.

            1. I have time to take pictures when stuck in the morning traffic jam caused by said resurfacing work. ;)

          2. We’ve actually just closed a lane or two of the affected roads here and there. Lots of installation works for the lighting have been started since a few months ago. The full road closures start tomorrow (Wednesday), which is the shortest affected period we’ve had yet in three years…

        2. most of the lighting structures have been up since early August. most of the fences and walls have been up for a couple of weeks, now. some roads are already closed. they will move in the last sections and close the rest of the traffic today and tomorrow.

      2. I snapped a quick photo of the painted walls on the way to work today. This particular section (turn 3 to turn 4) was colored baby blue:

    8. The painted walls and run-offs sound cool :)

    9. Could anyone explain me why everyone here complains about bumps being reduced/taken off ?
      What do they bring ?

      1. I think Mark Webber put it best when they raced there for the first time in 2008.

        Basically he said on a straight, bumps are just an annoyance, they don’t challenge the driver. But in a corner, it’s a different matter – a bump can make the difference between a difficult bend and an easy one.

        They can force drivers into making difficult decisions about set-ups. Run the car higher and it’ll cope with the bumps better, but it won’t be as good elsewhere on the track.

        Another good example is David Coulthard. When he raced at the Lausitzring in the DTM for the first time this year he complained to the other drivers how bumpy it was. They thought nothing of it – they race at far bumpier circuits, the Norisring for example. But the F1 world has got into this mindset where bumps are a “problem” that must be “fixed”, rather than just being part of the challenge of racing.

        Here’s the discussion we had about Singapore’s bumps back in 2008:

        Would you get rid of Singapore’s bumps?

        1. So these bumps are fixed in corners? From the description I got I thought it was more about the short straights between the corners that was fixed.

        2. In an F1 car the driver sits essentially on the floor of the car and going over a bump at high speed is, if we are to believe Martin Brundle who is certainly better placed to know than any of us, rather painful and could well result in injuries long-term.

          Touring cars do not, of course, have this problem, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that DTM drivers can “get used” to bumps much more easily.

          1. I’m well aware of that. F1 designers could always build their cars differently to lessen the discomfort, but they choose not to. That’s not a good enough reason to dumb down the tracks.

            1. I am thoroughly disgusted by this response. It doesn’t seem to matter to you that repeated compressions of the spine of the sort that you’re blithely condoning could lead to severe spinal disorders in later life, especially given how young many F1 drivers are these days. Of course this doesn’t happen at the moment, but I’m sure it would if bumps were allowed to get out of hand.

              It’s not just long-term dangerous, either. Bumps are challenging because cars still derive much of their downforce from ground effect; interrupting this over a bump makes the car lose grip in an unpredictable manner. This is difficult to drive with, but it’s also dangerous.

              There’s an increasing tendency to disregard the dangers to modern sportsmen, and not just in F1 – players are going to die on rugby and American football pitches before this decade is out, practically no cricketer manages a career longer than five years without major knee or ankle surgery, and of course in more explicitly dangerous sports like eventing if nobody dies this year that’s good.

              But who cares? Mourn the departed for a week, but make sure the cars are ready for the next race. There’s money to be made. And nobody really cares if the driver can’t walk without crutches when they’re 50, because who’ll be watching then?

            2. Yeah, I once got on a bus in Spain and the drivers seat had a giant spring underneath it, and went up and down when the bus went over bumps, F1 could come up with a similar comfort feature for 100x the price of a spring!
              Sometimes I feel F1 forgets about the practical things, everything has to be multimillion pound aero tweaks ect!

            3. Ilanin, F1 should be about challenging designers to make cars that can handle whatever the circuits throw at them and drivers who can race them. It shouldn’t be about making the circuits easier to drive on.

              As Keith said, if the discomfort or danger to the drivers was such that they risked serious injury driving over bumps then the cars should be changed, not the tracks.

            4. Ilanin – I’m not disregarding the dangers at all. Difficult decisions have to be made about safety in Formula 1 because if you always erred on the side of safety then Formula 1 wouldn’t exist. The FIA and circuit designers do a massive amount of work on figuring out where run-offs need to be, how large they should be and what they should be made of precisely so that should a driver lose control they have somewhere to go.

              But I do not believe the case for eradicating bumps in F1 is being made on safety grounds, I believe it’s being made because they’re seen as an impediment to performance rather than a challenge to be tackled.

            5. Ilanin- probably the most extreme reply i’ve ever seen. settle down, they’re not driving over mt everest size bumps…

    10. The bumps being removed means for an exciting race

    11. HounslowBusGarage
      20th September 2010, 17:41

      Not about bumps I’m afraid, but there was talk after last year’s race of doing away with the waterfront grandstand and the tunnel beneath it. I haven’t heard any more, so I assume that section of the track remains unchanged; is that correct.
      Weren’t the organisers going to alter the pit entry access as well?

      1. Yeah, the Bay Grandstand is still there. Certainly isn’t gonna be removed for this year’s race considering that the tickets for that grandstand have already been sold out. ;)

      2. Yes, it remains unchanged for this year.

        There’s talk about getting various parts of the track changed for the race next year though, including doing away with turns 18 to 21 and letting the cars go straight on past the Bay Grandstand after turn 17.

    12. So the resurfacing work between turns 3 and 7 explains the presence of construction machinery that’s been making my daily commute a royal pain in the rear!

      I did notice that the blocks of concrete supporting the catch fencing was painted baby blue. What’s that supposed to add to the track? Sector 1/2/3 identification?

      1. Whats Singapore like to live in? I may be going as part of my uni? Obviously I would only go if it corrosponded with the GP :P

        1. Hot, humid, crowded and expensive to live in. Just compare the price of the Singapore GP tickets with that for the Malaysian GP.. ouch.

          Of course, it’s all relative depending on where you hail from!

      2. Yes, looks like it. Sector 1 is blue, Sector 2 green, Sector 3 yellow. I’ll try to get a few pictures these couple of days.

    13. Why does F1 also have the mindset that a change of paint, and in a brighter colour, makes a difference to the racing?

      1. No idea :-)

      2. I do think that it made a small positive to the viewing pleasure in Valencia, because the race wasn’t all that great. And if indeed they give each sector its own colour, it will be a tiny bit easier to identify what we see if the broadcast isn’t clearly showing it. Provided of course that in the dark we can still make out those colours.

        I would agree that when considering changes, these shouldn’t be the biggest priority, but I suppose they are among the easiest and cheapest.

    14. Yes they should “earn” their pay but the real drawback of a very bumpy circuit is that there may only be one passable line into a corner, or one line that is much less rough, which ruiins an otherwise good passing segment. Same issue with big painted crosswalks and manhole covers on a street course.

    15. I hope it improves the racing. In 2008 we saw some good racing but things were different in 2009. I hope it rains in Quali & raceday which will make the weekend very interesting indeed.

    16. Im a Singaporean and it really really seems like it will rain this weekend like it has for the past month…

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