New images reveal how 2015 Mexican GP will look

2015 Mexican Grand Prix

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New images from circuit designer Hermann Tilke have revealed more details of how the revised Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez will look for this year’s Mexican Grand Prix.

The circuit was last used for Formula One racing in 1992. Tilke, who has designed all or part of almost every venue on the current F1 calendar, has altered almost every corner on the old circuit to bring it in line with current F1 safety standards.

The most significant change has taken place at the final corner, Peraltada, where cars are diverted away from the old, high-speed 180-degree corner and into a new, slower section which passed through a grandstand.

This configuration was first used by Champ Car racing in the early 2000s, but the latest revisions to it should reduce corner speeds further before the cars arrive at the start/finish line and pit entrance.

From the starting grid drivers should have one of the longest runs to turn one of the season, after which they enter a tightened opening sequence of corners. The clockwise layout measures 4.438 kilometres, putting it among the shortest on the calendar, with a projected race distance of 69 laps.

2015 Mexican Grand Prix

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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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    58 comments on “New images reveal how 2015 Mexican GP will look”

    1. I’m sad with the need to take away the Peraltada, but at least I think the change introduced will bring some show to the track! The baseball stadium part will be fantastic if the grandstands are full. There’s one more thing which I think will be interesting – the 4/5 high-speed corners before. The rest is a little dull with long straights (+DRS for sure) but that’s how it was, so excited to see the race and how it goes!

      1. The stands are already sold out for the three days, i think us mexicans will put up a show even if the race is dull.

        1. @mijail Oh!! That’s awesome!! You are one of those? Hope for some feedback after the race :)

        2. Wow, nice! I guess its no surprise though, this race has always got massive crowds.

      2. Great old circuit – Redesigned by Tilke and made very bland – lots of pre-race hype – race looks like every other race – three years – Bernie puts fee up – race disappears.

        Move to new location and repeat.

    2. I guess this will then be the longest run to the first corner now?

      1. I expect some incidents with the 90° first corner.

    3. I was very disappointed with the way this circuit has been butchered, but these renderings just made it a whole lot worse: SO MUCH TARMAC! Just looking at the esses section, what is stopping me from running wide and taking extra speed through the corners? I also like to point out that this rendering does not match the aerial rendering (“you had one job”).

      This circuit has transformed into ‘generic Tilke track number 216’. The circuit can now be described as ‘slow corners, long straight, slow corners, long straight, slow corners, generic Maggots/Becketts/Chapel clone, slow corners’. That’s it, there is nothing more to it. And of course I can’t wait to see DRS being used on the main straight.

      1. @andae23 I understand where you’re coming from and you might be right but you haven’t even seen a car going round it.

        In all the recent additions only India really was a great one in my opinion. The revival of Austria was also pretty cool last year so for all we know Mexico might be the best race of the season…

        Despite it being ‘butchered’ as you say it still, most likely, will deliver a better race than Melbourne or China this year whilst they’ve been on the calender for a decade…

        1. @xtwl It might produce great racing, but that’s not all, is it? If I watch an onboard lap from Suzuka, my thoughts include “wow he was right on the edge at the S curves” and “You can’t go any faster through 130R without crashing”. The circuit is spectacular by itself, you only need one car to get a great viewing experience. With most Tilke circuits, it’s like “ooh he had small lock-up at the big braking zone at the hairpin” and “Oh he carried a bit too much speed through there, so he just bee lined across the run-off area as they all do.” There is no thrill, no excitement, just a big parking lot with straight lines painted onto it.

          1. I agree, onboards on great tracks are fantastic but many of those tracks do not have action packed races. So I find you have unpopular tracks with good races and classics with great onboards with not so good races. Lucky I like both perspectives so like them both. Monaco is best for me on board but is ofyen put down as being boring. Many race drivers pit it as the biggest thrill to drive.

          2. @andae23 I agree but wouldn’t you say a exciting race is more important than an exciting onboard?

            On top of that I can’t think of that many tracks who provide both at a high rate, Spa, Silverstone, Mount Panorama, La Sarthe,…

          3. I don’t think that Tilke builds bad tracks, it is just the combination of this massive tarmac run offs, if they could have a tarmac strip with a gravel trap or grass afterwards, you still could recover from small mistakes but be punished if you really have a proper run off with the car.

          4. +1 The lack of imagination in Tilke-world is quite staggering. Never, ever anything out of the ordinary.

          5. petebaldwin (@)
            22nd April 2015, 17:33

            @andae23 – For me, it’s all about the racing but having said that, I’m not convinced this track will give us that. The stadium section looks horrible, the kink after turn 1 will stop anyone fighting back who has been passed down the straight and these modern cars won’t be able to follow closely through the esses.

            From what I can see, the only overtaking spot will be down the home straight which will be simple DRS motorway passes.

            I’d love to be proven wrong but I remember seeing the layout for Russia and thinking “oh no… It can’t be as bad as it looks….”

      2. Agree.
        I knew about Peraltada, but the rest of the track is also jeopardized.
        Turn 4 and 5 was a difficult quick-slow “S” combination. Now is a tasteless chicane.
        Following the hairpin you had a wonderful series of quicker and quicker bends, really a fantastic sequence. Now you have only a memory of it.
        Really don’t understand why they needed to make these modifications.

        1. Really don’t understand why they needed to make these modifications.

          @david-b For safety reasons. Those really fast esses had practically no runoff with concrete walls on the outside.
          I read that they initially planned to move the wall’s & leave the circuit layout untouched but found that they could not move the wall’s to extend the runoff so had to move the circuit inwards to get adequate runoff.

          150-180 Mph as modern cars accelerate through that section with no runoff & concrete walls would simply not be safe, Indycar (And pretty much everything else) stopped racing there for that very reasons.

    4. Those renderings are so unrealistic, a Sauber on pole position XD

      1. Not as crazy as a McLaren in 2nd.

      2. Willem Cecchi (@)
        22nd April 2015, 14:54

        Sergio Pérez… Mexico…

      3. We also appear to have 3 car teams and Mercedes and Williams failing to meet the 107% rule.

        1. Ferrari have 4 cars now! :P

      4. It also seems that HRT have been resurrected and qualified 11th…

      5. petebaldwin (@)
        22nd April 2015, 17:34

        I love how it says “new pictures” but they are clearly quite old!

      6. Willem Cecchi (@)
        23rd April 2015, 6:29

        Are these leaked images of F1 2015?!?! #lol

    5. one positive thing to note – short track=lots of laps. the more laps there are, the more chances for overtakes etc. like interlagos, montreal.

      1. ColdFly F1 (@)
        23rd April 2015, 0:44

        @frood19 – not sure why short laps would lead to more overtaking.

        Lapping yes! But overtaking?

        1. @coldfly – simply because there are more opportunities in the race. most circuits have a limited number of places where a pass is possible (typically long straight-slow corner). obviously it depends on the circuit. for example, at spa there are 3 decent places to pass (les combes, bus stop, and la source) so there is a reasonable number of opportunities in a 44 lap race. compare that to interlagos which has 2 good overtaking spots but more chances to use them in a 72 lap race. coupled with the fact that short laps tend to lend themselves to more bunched fields, this is one reason why a short lap is better.

          an unrelated reason is that when you’re at the track, you see a lot more action. brands hatch indy circuit misses some classic pieces of track but the fan experience is better.

    6. I know people will be disappointed with the changes, But with the lack of runoff that was at the fastest sections what else could really be done?
      They could not extend the runoff or move the wall’s due to whats behind them so the only choice was to move the circuit inwards which is what they did, Its a shame but it would be even worse if you had a massive accident at 180mph which resulted in injury.

      Regarding Peraltada, Its not the same corner it was when F1 last raced there anyway. They took away some of the banking, Made it narrower & removed all of the runoff with concrete wall’s on the inside & outside of the corner.
      The only things that have run uninterrupted through there since the changes have been stock cars & some smaller, Much slower categories. Champcar, A1GP & the Grand-Am sportscars all ran through either the stadium or through a chicane before it to slow them down & remember that Champcar’s were designed to run on oval’s yet even they decided against running through Peraltada at full speed for safety reasons.

    7. Sauber definitely likes this image, not sure ForceIndia…

    8. I’ll reserve proper judgement until after we see the race, but so far I’m incredibly mixed on this track.

    9. About Peraltada, I don’t understand why they don’t use Nascar-type SAFER-walls.
      After all, the last turn in Indianapolis (turn 1 of the oval) had no run-off too, even if it was taken flat out and thus wasn’t a ‘real’ corner. Nobody complained (except Ralf, maybe :p) and they kept it like that.
      With SAFER walls, you greatly increase the safety of the corner. People are talking about runoff, but remember: a wall along the edge of the track is much safer than a wall 5m away. So either you put 30m of runoff or a wall on the edge.

      Of course, it would stay more dangerous than the ugly complex they built. But F1 should keep in mind that tracks are part of the show too, along with cars and drivers. Watching F1 cars at 80kph in a hairpin is far less thrilling than at 200kph in a great curve: not only drivers like fast corners, fans also do !

      1. I understand your view, I really do! But don’t compare Nascar cars with F1 cars.
        And despite seeing a lot of incidents on Nascar races, drivers are prepared for that and most of the times they don’t have injuries… But I don’t think F1 can afford another fatal crash in the next few years. I’m in for racing but I also don’t want to see every year crashes like Jules and others.

        1. @key75
          Why can’t F1 afford another fatal crash ?

          Racing drivers & riders are killed far more often in other series and you rarely here anyone trying to shut them down.

          1. @beneboy Well if you are ok with that, fine by me. But I prefer racing without seeing somebody get badly hurt. Call me silly, not a true racing fan whatever you want, but you already see a lot of people dead daily in the news. So I think it’s normal if I prefer to see good and fun racing on the weekend with everybody well in the end. And if because of that they need to change some tracks, I’m fine with it.

            1. @key75
              I’m not calling you anything mate, I just wanted to know your reasoning.
              I think we’d all prefer to see no one else dying in motorsport, it’s just an unrealistic expectation when you’ve got people racing at over 100 mph.
              Motorsport is dangerous and always will be, personaly I think some aspects of safety have gone too far and it is taking away far more than it adds – seeing tracks butchered and new tracks with acres of run-off is making racing less challanging and less exciting, for example.
              On the other hand there are certain practices I find far too risky, recovery vehicles or marshals being allowed on or next to the track under yellows, for example.

            2. @beneboy It was just an expression and sorry if I overreacted a bit.

              While I agree with you about the marshals thing, I always cringe when I see them on track with just yellow flags, I really don’t see why run-off is turning races less exciting. Drivers can always be on the limit because if they make an error they know there’s no fatal end (or at least that’s what expected) and there’s even the rule of having always at least 2 wheels on the track so no one take advantage, right?
              I know some people won’t agree with me because they prefer to see the racing on the limit of speed and life (like in the 80’s and 90’s) and drivers being challenged by that “fear” of racing. I understand it but it’s just not my way of seeing the sport and I think it’s enough dangerous already.
              If the sport is good there’s still can be a lot of good racing and overtakes without putting someone in risk. Now, is the sport good enough?! Well we know the answer to that and changes are needed but not in the tracks ;)

          2. @beneboy Go back & look at the media outcry after Senna’s death in 1994 (One French paper had the headline ‘BloodSport’ on the front page) to see why a fatality would be bad for F1.
            Its worth remembering that Max Mosley initially spoke out against big knee-jerk changes but was forced into making changes sooner because of the media backlash & general bad publicity that F1 was getting for weeks afterwards.

            Or more recently look at Dan Wheldon’s fatal crash in Indycar in 2011. Indycar was hammered after that & the accident was the only thing that was played on the news & put in the papers & that badly hurt Indycar.

            Its also important to remember that for those who don’t follow the sport closely, For potential sponsors & the mass market in general.. When things go badly wrong & when the mass media are doing report after report on a fatal accident & thats all those people are exposed to for however long the reporting continues then its going to hurt the sports image & is likely to put off potential sponsors who don’t want the negative backlash & publicity that it brings.

      2. @bebilou Simple: Nascar is slow. Very slow compared to F1. In the corners it’s slower than F3

      3. @bebilou One problem is that its not a traditional concrete wall & as I understand it safer barriers cannot be installed there because of that.
        You see in this image that its a bit more like a temporary circuit with blocks (Im not sure there even concrete) rather than a more permanent wall as you see on ovals like Indy-

        Additionally its not just about the wall or lack of runoff, An additional problem is that the track is very narrow there & with the stadium/walls on the inside drivers don’t have good visibility through it which would cause problems should a car crash ahead & end up in the middle of the track.
        Another potential issue is the slight banking (Albeit not as much as it was last time F1 was there) which as we saw with the few crashes we saw at Indy results in cars sliding down the banking & onto the racing line which along with the poor visibility drivers have through there could be really dangerous.

      4. @bebilou The lack of run-off is only part of the problem – creating a safe pit lane entrance is another, and the high speed at which cars pass through that area and the limited space due to the stadium on the inside makes that difficult.

      5. Also, adding walls make the cars look faster.

    10. Is it me or is the stadium section almost exactly the same as the last sector at Hockenheim?

      1. Now that you mention it, it’s very similar.

    11. What is the point of what they did to the first corner and turn 4 they already had plenty of run-off, Tilke ruining corners for no reason whatsoever. It literally looks like he tightened every corner just for the sake of it, and it also looks terrible from an aerial perspective. Also I presume that the slightly yellow run-off areas are not gravel but are more acres of tarmac run off, oh the joy.

      Before the changes were revealed I was really looking forward to the race, now it just looks like they’ve butchered a perfectly fine track. I hope the likes of Argentina and South Africa don’t return because it hurts to see Tilke destroy these classic circuits time and time again.

      1. What is the point of what they did to the first corner and turn 4 they already had plenty of run-off

        @dryyoshi Likely to create better overtaking opportunities.

        The theory tends to be that for an F1 car a decent length straght into tighter/slower corners requires more braking & longer braking zones which gives more room to out-brake & overtake another driver.
        The sort of faster corner entry as there used to be at turns 1 & 4 is seen as been a bit of a hindrance to overtaking in F1 because the braking zone woudl be fairly small & they could carry so much speed into it that there would be little room to run side by side.

        The sort of sequence like has been put in the stadium with a few slower chicanes/hairpins is also something which is seen to produce good racing.
        You saw it at the final few corners at Istanbul, The 1st few at Bahrain & in the stadium section at Hockenheim. Drivers go into the 1st part alongside each other & stay side by side through the exit into the next part with the battle continuing a bit longer than if it was just 1 corner where someone gets up the inside & gets the move done with no subsequent battling.

      2. Kyalami is already lost its magic after 1991 return (from fast flowing track to twisty track).

    12. I’ll reserve the final judgement until the race. But I wish they’d built a new proper track out of town and left the old classic as it is. It’s ruined completely. There’s even less of the old track’s character here than in the Ruined by Tilke(TM) Hockenheim. Thank you for nothing yet again Herr Herman

      1. – Ruined by Tilke™

        This should be a thing

    13. HRT somehow still exist in this magical world as the render depicts.

    14. The Tilke bashing is getting so boring. The worst part of the bashing, it’s quite short sighted. Not once have I ever heard anyone factor in that these tracks need lifespans of 20+ years. Is it just possible that Tilke has more vision into where F1 cars performance will be in 20yrs than all these arm chair critics? He might be designing the greatest f1 tracks ever for races 10yrs out from now – 1500-2000hp beasts that are now safe to drive due to his layouts.

      1. Given the cars are slower than 10 years I ago, I wouldn’t bet on the cars getting significantly faster in the next 20 years.

        1. Yes we should look to the past to predict where future technology will lead us. It’s that exact type of thinking that futurist like Tilke have to deal with, it must be so painful for the tilkes and neweys of this industry to have to deal with the regular folk who scream from their arm chairs. Thank god the ones writing the checks leave the thinking to those with vision.

      2. Is it just possible that Tilke has more vision into where F1 cars performance will be in 20yrs than all these arm chair critics?

        Not really, seeing as nobody in F1 seems to know how regulations are changing year to year.

    15. That ran to turn 1, will it be the longest on the calender?

    16. So the circuit has one of the longest straights but is also one of the shortest tracks on the calendar, an interesting design philosophy.
      As I have never seen a race here, I will kindly reserve judgement on it until I see the cars in action around the circuit.

      Is there any elevation change changes in the track (like Eau Rogue or the lead up to Turn 1 at COTA)?

      1. Are* instead of Is….

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