F1 using ‘overtaking sim’ to design future tracks

Date published: January 11 2019

F1 using 'overtaking sim' to design future tracks

Formula 1’s new circuits could all be designed purely around overtaking with Pat Symonds revealing F1 has designed the “world’s first overtaking simulation.”

Formula 1 has come in for a lot of criticism in recent years due to the lack of overtaking.

While the design of the cars has been largely blamed for this, the tracks have also borne some of the responsibility.

This led F1’s powers-that-be to commission a simulator specifically aimed at overtaking with Symonds revealing that it is being used for the Vietnam track that will debut in 2020.

“We’ve produced what I think is the world’s first overtaking simulation,” Symonds told Autosport.

“It’s been extremely complex to do. To run a lap takes several hours.

“It’s a very, very complex simulation but it has a proper wake model of the cars, it looks at the surface and the tyre characteristics and all these sort of things.

“We’re now using that to design our new circuits and to look at some modifications.

“Vietnam, which is the first circuit we’ve really been involved with, I think that we have really been able to understand what it will take to make good racing there.

“I think Vietnam is going to be a superb circuit. It’s got some great features and it’s going to have some close racing at it.”

The former F1 technical director added the moving away from single racing lines is a “science” and one that F1 needs to embrace.

“We’ve got to have science behind it,” he added. “We’ve got to have the evidence.

“I’ve heard so many theories [on] how to make cars overtake – everyone saying give them mechanical grip, you hear that one time and time again.

“The evidence is actually that in a wet race, where you’ve got less grip, you get much better racing.

“So, we’re putting the science into it now.”

Follow us on Twitter @Planet_F1 and like our Facebook page.