Indian Grand Prix DRS zone extended again

2013 Indian Grand Prix

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The DRS zone will be used on the main straight at the Buddh International Circuit has been extended for the second year in a row.

The circuit has had two DRS zones since it first appeared on the calendar in 2011. But for the second year in a row the activation point on the longest straight has been lengthened.

An extra 80 metres was added onto the DRS zone last year. The activation point has now been moved even earlier, adding a further 160 metres to the DRS zone. DRS will be able to activate DRS 270 metres after the exit of turn three on the 1.06km straight.

The detection points for both zones and the activation point for the zone on the pit straight remain unchanged.

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Keith Collantine
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25 comments on “Indian Grand Prix DRS zone extended again”

  1. Thank God, I was getting so bored with DRS zones that are less than 500 meters long, they required too much effort.

  2. This is the problem. Too many modern circuits have a slow corner before a long straight leading to another slow corner.

    As much as having a long straight to encourage overtaking makes sense, you totally ruin it if you have a slow, tight corner before it. Formula 1 cars accelerate so quickly, that just being able to get on the power a little bit earlier than a chasing car at low speeds means you immediately pull ahead quite considerably. So now the car behind has DRS, but rather than spending the length of the straight in your slipstream looking to make a move, they’re now trying to catch you up again and make up the ground lost in the concertina effect.

    This is probably the worst example of this type of corner on the calendar.

    1. Yes, exactly right. But you have to look at the entire area map to see if that is a design mistake or forced upon the designers by being crammed into a land area that’s just too small. Is this circuit on Google Maps? I’d like to see how tightly hemmed in it is.
      Apart from that, extending the DRS zones seems like a last, desperate attempt to make this race exciting and to forestall the demise of a very expensive white elephant track. Question for people in India – is this track used much in the rest of the year?

      1. @timothykatz
        I can’t see why they should be in space problems. The track is located in the middle of nowhere like most other new tracks these days.
        But I think shortening the track might do the trick.
        If they can extend T1 slightly, to raise the speed, and then simply ignore T3 and make T2 a long sweeping right hander, sending the cars onto the straight around where the current DRS activation zone. That would increase the entry speeds on the straight significantly, and while T1 will always be traction limited without a complete redesign, the sweeping curve would allow the cars to gain traction and momentum and hopefully keep them close as they enter the straight. It would of cause have to make up for the shortening of the straight, and I am not sure that it would. But it could be a solution to get away from the ridiculously tight hairpin.

        1. @mads
          If there’s plenty of room around, then I’d definitely say the tight right onto the main straight was a mistake, and think your solution would work. The circuit is 5.125 km, so even if it lost the 125m in re-planning it would almost certainly improve the racing.
          I remember looking a plan of the circuit and seeing that there was what looked like an ‘inside lane’ at turn 4 and another one at turn 10. Does anyone know what these are used for?

          1. MotoGP or something similar when they planned to go. The turn is probably not suitable for them (turn 4 being too tight and not enough run off, and turn 10 being banked).

            I love the banked turn, it has a great flow, but using the other turn 4 could help :)

        2. Very good solution!

        3. Michael Brown (@)
          24th October 2013, 12:31

          @mads I was thinking about this same solution as well. In addition, I would make the back straight a very slight left curve, which would make the straight after turn 4 longer

    2. Exactly. That’s what they did in Yas Marina too, with the result we know…

    3. @magnificent-geoffrey you are right, however don’t forget that Tilke actually designed the ‘tight corner onto very long straight’ to encourage overtaking! this was after 2008 when drivers complained that fast corners meant you couln’t get close to the car infront due to dirty air. So tilke designed the very slow corners before straights at Abu Dhabi, India, Austin, Korea, and to a lesser extent, Valencia. Each of these tracks have very long, or extended, DRS zones.

      i thought he’d know better.

    4. @magnificent-geoffrey
      Absolutely right. You can see how bad it is that they need straights, and we get much better racing at Suzuka. Which has never been a terribly overtaking friendly place.

      Actually Suzuka is quite a good example. Not a lot of overtaking into turn one due to the quick nature of T1/T2 and the traction limitations out of the chicane. However after 130R there is very short burst down to the chicane, and we get a lot of overtaking there, simply because the straight before it allows the cars to catch up in the slipstream, use the momentum through the fast 130R and then seal the deal into the chicane.
      The Bus Stop chicane at Spa is a very similar situation. Fast corners leading into straights (no need for those +1km runways like Tilke seems to love so much) followed by slow corners is what makes overtaking happen.
      Slow corners into long straights doesn’t. I have no idea how they got that into their heads in the first place.

      1. Yep. Also, the DRS in Suzuka was, in my view, correct. 1 zone only, which AIDED (not did it for the drivers) overtaking, and the rest was down to the drivers. In most races this year (and last year) it has been push the button and you are past.

        Extending the DRS again here is ridiculous and unnecessary.

  3. The Extension of DRS zones is to aid Qualifying than Race.

    1. not at all. DRS only has a significant effect on gearing in 6th and 7th gear. the DRS zone in India could only be half the back straight and that’d be enough to satisfy the FIA regarding gear ratios.

  4. Another disappointment with the DRS. India has a brilliant sector 2 and part of sector 3 (corners 5 to 14), challenging for the drivers, spectacular for the fans, and is ruined by the superlong straights with DRS. Does anyone have the impression that overtaking with DRS isn’t easy enough that we have to make the activation area even longer?

    1. Exactly! I don’t mind DRS when it is used right, but this is ludicrous :(

  5. India may not host this weekend GP according to reports as they haven’t paid the 2012 entertainment taxes.

    1. That would be an awkward way for Vettel and Red Bull to win the championship.

      1. More interesting than them winning…

  6. When will the FIA learn what we F1 Fanatics have known for two and a half years? Having DRS on the longest straight is a waste of time. It doesn’t aid overtaking to have a car bouncing off the rev limiter halfway down a straight instead of three-quarters of the way.

    If the FIA insist on having flippy-flappy gimmicky wings, give us a DRS zone on a straight which isn’t the longest on the track (where drs will actually give the drivers a top speed advantage), and open up new, more exciting passing opportunities. I would almost welcome DRS is if meant a driver was chucking one down the inside of turn 5!

    1. And the driver in front ends up getting a penalty! (2011)

  7. Well, they’ve got to catch Vettel somehow …

    1. They can’t if the court wins or unless if Vettel decides not to race this weekend

  8. The ‘overtaking’ in the DRS zone last year was already too easy, Extending it again will just it even easier.

    Guess they don’t want the drivers to actually have to fight for an overtake anymore, Push of a button passing on a long straght is much easier & also a lot safer afterall :(

  9. With these Pirelli tyres still no one in the circus has remembered (or at least tried) of making a race without DRS. I have a feeling that it could create some very good racing, with no artifficial overtaking and some more wheel-to-wheel action. Instead, the DRS zones are just getting bigger and bigger, which is just an attempt at a short term solution, which is more likely to damage the racing than to make things better.

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