Anthoine Hubert, Van Amersfoort, European F3, Red Bull Ring, 2016

New kerbs to address corner-cutting at Red Bull Ring

2016 Austrian Grand Prix

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New kerbs have been added at every significant corner on the Red Bull Ring in a bid to reduce corner-cutting by drivers during this year’s race.

However the changes did little to reduce the number of penalties issued for track limits abuses during the recent European Formula Three races at the home of the Austrian Grand Prix.

Turn one exit kerbs

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Red Bull Ring, 2015
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, Red Bull Ring, 2015
Lance Stroll, Prema, European F3, Red Bull Ring, 2016
Lance Stroll, Prema, European F3, Red Bull Ring, 2016

The changes have come following a complete resurfacing of the track and pit lane at the Austrian venue.

The entry to turns one, two, three five and eight now feature 25mm negative kerbs. High 100mm kerbs, the same as those used at turn nine at the Circuit of the Americas, have been added at the apexes of corners one, two and nine.

The exit of several corners also feature new kerbs to discourage drivers from running excessive wide. Turns one and two have a combination of 25mm negative kerbs followed by 50mm high ‘sausage’ kerbs, separated by a 60cm gap.

The final five corners on the track all have 50mm negative double kerbs at the exit, of the type used at turn nine on the Circuit de Catalunya. Turn three has also has a new 25mm negative kerb at its exits.

The run-off areas have had attention to, with more space provided at turns one, two and eight.

Turn eight exit kerbs

Sergio Perez, Force India, Red Bull Ring, 2015
Sergio Perez, Force India, Red Bull Ring, 2015
Anthoine Hubert, Van Amersfoort, European F3, Red Bull Ring, 2016
Anthoine Hubert, Van Amersfoort, European F3, Red Bull Ring, 2016

During the 2014 Austrian Grand Prix weekend half the F1 field had lap times deleted during qualifying for running wide at turn eight.

However during the three-race European F3 weekend last month track limits remained a major cause for concern. Joel Eriksson was stripped of pole position for one race after having his two fastest times disallowed for running wide.

Other drivers were given post-race penalties for further track limits violations in each of the three races including Callum Ilott who lost a podium finish.

2016 Austrian 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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  • 13 comments on “New kerbs to address corner-cutting at Red Bull Ring”

    1. Seems like this would have been good opportunity to test the blue and red runoff areas used at Paul Ricard. I’d be interested in seeing how they work in a grand prix setting.

      1. @lateralus
        They probably wont use it ever again, maybe just in small patches, as the main ingredient of those abrasive runoffs (IIRC) is tungsten. It is a very expensive way of slowing the cars down, with the perk of damaging the tyre surface.

    2. Just put two metres of grass next to the track. If anyone makes the tarmac on the other side of the grass automatic drive through. Simple.

    3. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
      30th June 2016, 11:25

      In F3, the new kerbs were about as useful as Jeremy Corbyn branded caviar…

      …F1 needs to think more imaginatively about track limits in fast corners, because there is a trade-off to be had between spoiling the profile of the corner and the ultimate necessity of a more draconian interpretation of track limits regulations.

      Malmedy at Spa is a corner taken flat out qualifying, and yet, it is surrounded by a gravel-trap and grass. It has never needed run-off because a positively cambered exit kerb is a supportive aid for the cars on exit, and therefore despite being a tremendously quick corner, it is rare to see cars run wide. The same is true of the kumho-kurve at the Nurburgring. Cambered kerbs please…

    4. It would also make sense to put a strip of grass or very slippery artificial grass close the kerbs followed by the usual run offs. That’d not only deter drivers from exceeding track limits but also if in case a driver runs wide, he’ll loose grip and hence time.

    5. I never understood why kerb stones need to be so wide nowadays. Especially if you look at the turn 8 kerbs, they are wider than the cars. If they are that wide, it just invites drivers to run wide. What happened to kerb stones that are as wide as the tyres? The whole point of kerb stones at the exit of the corner is to make sure that if a driver makes a mistake and carries too much speed into a corner, he isn’t immediately on the grass. If kerbs would be less wide, this whole discussion of “did he cross the white line or not?” wouldn’t be an issue. Quick sketch to illustrate what I mean.

      1. Totally agree with this. I went to silverstone a few years back and couldn’t believe the size of them, I could comfortably sit on the “sausage” part, almost fully stretch my legs and still not be touching the tarmac. It may as well have been a sofa for all I knew.
        But in all seriousness, so long as these kerbs are deemed safe, drivers will use them, an extra 3 foot of track width at every corner adds up to a huge time loss if you don’t use it. It would be silly to make them unsafe and so the only other thing to do is to reduce the width.

      2. the kerb is outside of the white line/track limit anyway. no matter how wide the kerb is, if they have two tyres in, they’re still on the track.

        1. But the difference is that if the kerb is tyre-width, then having two wheels outside the white line will slow drivers down a lot more than when the kerb is car-width. So when a car runs with all four wheels off the track, a narrower kerb will impose a heavier ‘natural’ punishment than when the kerb stones are wide (in that case there is virtually no natural punishment at all). That’s why I say that if the kerb stones are narrower, the whole discussion on track limits will be a lot less tiresome.

    6. Kevin Magnussen: “You know,” he said, “I’ve never been to an ‘old’ track that I didn’t like. They’re more fun than modern circuits, and one thing that definitely makes them better is when there’s no run-off – just grass and a wall or a tree or something. Everybody has a brain, so you know if you go off it’s going to hurt, and obviously that makes it more challenging – OK, of course we don’t want to get hurt, but no matter how you look at it, it’s a choice: the safer you make it, the less exciting it is. It’s as clear as that.”

    7. Hey, are there different types of kerbs? I mean sausage kerbs, positive kerbs, negative kerbs etc etc?

    8. Just reinstate the grass verges and gravel traps and let’s stop this tedious ‘track limits’ nonsense once and for all.

    9. Why don’t they use the black-white flag? They would show it to the driver after a few cuts and then issue stop&go penalty (or black flag).

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