Miami track designer achieved F1’s ‘holy grail’

Sam Cooper
An aerial view of Miami. Miami Grand Prix May 2022.

The Miami Grand Prix’s circuit designer believes they achieved F1’s “holy grail” of cars overtaking around a corner.

There has always been suggestions for improvement following the debut of a new race but at Miami, it seems there has been more than most.

The surface and the Turns 14/15 have been at the top of the list of gripes the drivers have had with the track and one of the organisers behind the event admitted that they could make changes in the future to improve the track.

Managing partner Tom Garfinkel told Autosport they were changing “whatever we need to, to make the track better”.

“I think the challenge with the [turn 14/15] chicane and I don’t know that we communicated well enough why it exists and where it exists,” said Garfinkel.

“It was a bit of a necessary evil, if you will, to get the track big enough to create the rest of the race track to be great.

 

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“That’s an area where it’s a tricky part because we have to really slow people down because we didn’t have enough run-off space.

“I think from talking to some folks at F1 and the FIA, I think there’s an opportunity to maybe change that a little bit to make it better. But it’s a bit of a necessary evil through there to get them to slow down.”

However, the circuit’s designer said he thought “it worked” and was pleased that they achieved what he described as F1’s “holy grail”, passing on corners.

“We’ve a lot of analysis to do,” Clive Bowen, founder and director of Apex Circuit Design told GPFans.com.

“I know the drivers didn’t particularly like having to go quite so slowly [in the chicane], so maybe we’ll look at that.

“We’ll see what the FIA will let us get away with, maybe make it a bit quicker because certainly, that would improve things from a driver’s perspective, but that’s not a decision for me. That’s something that will be done in the round.

“For the rest of the track, you know what, I think it worked. It’s intentionally challenging, intentionally technical, and although for the first two days the track took a long time to come to the drivers, the race itself provided multiple lines and had great racing.

“What I love, we did achieve the holy grail in F1- we had passing on corners.”

The Miami track provided the second-highest number of overtakes this year at 45 with only Bahrain producing more (58).