Which Old Circuit Should Make a Come Back?

Formula One has lost many circuits over the years some were main stays of the championship for years others only flirting briefly with the sport. But which one would we most like to see back on the Calendar? Today’s guests, championing their favourite tracks are @GregoryHainesF1Motorsports editor at  http://www.gpupdate.net. Next up we have @Jimmyb_84 . motorsports reporter for http://www.motorstv.co.uk  .  

@GregoryHainesF1 : Bring Back the Red Bull Ring

Nowadays in Formula 1, debates tend to revolve around which tracks could be removed from the calendar to allow space for brand-new, Hermann Tilke-designed super circuits spanning all four corners of the globe. We already know, for instance, that facilities in India, the Unites States and Russia will be joining the calendar over the course of the next two years.

Another thing we frequently hear of is which classic venue one would return to – be it the original Nürburgring, Monza’s banked oval or our very own Brands Hatch. But what about the Red Bull Ring? Formerly known as the A1-Ring and (before that) the Osterreichring, the exciting thing about Austria’s only ever Grand Prix setting is that it could actually be back sooner than we think.

If you want pure battles, the track set in the picturesque Styrian mountains never failed to deliver. It’s got all you need for a wonderful motor race: the scenery, the drastic elevation changes, tight bends and fast sweepers. It also houses no more than eight corners. Yes, eight. Not like the generally unpopular Valencia Street Circuit which (officially) sports no less than 25 bends and is too stop-start in its nature.

The Red Bull Ring’s great selection of ups, downs and curves mean the lap actually flows. So cars can follow each other closely but won’t ever be a sitting duck, as there’s no overtake-aiding hairpin in sight. It allows for the close competition we all crave but without the slam dunk-style passes.

Talking of Valencia, you must remember that Spain’s chances for a second F1 race were boosted by ‘Alonso Mania’. So how fantastic is the thought that the Austrian track is owned by Dietrich Mateschitz – the same man whose name is behind the cars currently leading the championship.

@Jimmyb_84 : Bring Back the Old Hockenhiemring

I think this old circuit should be put back on the F1 calendar because-well it’s quite simple, because it’s dangerous. That is what makes Monaco and Spa brilliant tracks.

We watch F1 because of the speed and the danger that 22 drivers face every time they strap themselves in their cars. No one likes to see a driver getting injured or worse but if we’re honest, it’s the only reason we watch it because something might happen, Hockenhiemring had that in abundance.

After an epic Grand Prix in 2000 at the circuit where Barrichello won the race from 18th on the grid in changeable weather conditions, this seemed to be a problem for the FIA as all the overtaking had taken place away from the majority of fans. My solution would be-build stands where overtaking is possible it’s not brain science.

There was nothing wrong with the track-it wasn’t broke so they didn’t need to fix it (or make it worse) that danger has now gone from the venue. I want the old one back; we need that speed, a proper engine test and finally the search for the perfect setup on such a demanding track, a proper car killer.  We can’t have INDYCAR claiming to be the fastest motor sport on earth; we need this legendary circuit back on to shut them up. David Coulthard reached a speed of 224.8mph (361.8km/h) on the mile long straight we need that back! @Jimmyb_84 also has a new blog, read it here http://jamesfostermotorsportworld.blogspot.com

@MarshallGP : Bring Back Donington Park

To be honest, it took me a while to settle on Donington Park as my subject for this debate as I don’t want to take the British Grand Prix away from Silverstone. Then it dawned on me! The San Marino Grand Prix was at Imola (Italy), the Swiss race was at Dijon (France) and the Luxembourg Grand Prix was at the Nurburgring (Germany)

So I give to you the Isle of Mann Grand Prix at Donington Park! Donington Park deserves to be back on the race calendar for many reasons, The quality for the last (and only) race there in 1993 was an absolute classic and perhaps Ayrton Senna’s finest drive, but you don’t need me to tell you all about that.

It was the dream of the late Tom Wheatcroft to bring Formula 1 to Donington and although the circuit only hosted the European round of the championship for one year, he never gave up the hope of F1 returning.

Donington has been the scene of some great racing over the years thanks to its undulating landscape and one of the most challenging complex of corners in world motorsports. Speaking from experience the run down from the first corner, down through Hollywood and the Craner Curves towards the old hairpin is one of the most adrenalin pumping things you can do without jumping out of a plane.

I’ve visited Donington many times, watching touring cars, historic racing, World series by Renault or just to take a look around the museum. The one thing I’d like to see more than anything else would be another Grand Prix. The British fans deserve it, if there is a country in the world who’s fans can support two races it’s ours. Tom Wheatcroft’s memory deserves it and the circuit deserves it. So come on Bernie give Donington (and the Isle of Mann) a chance.



16 thoughts on “Which Old Circuit Should Make a Come Back?

  1. Alan Williams

    My favourite out of those 3 would be old Hockenheim, which is almost the most distant from having a possiblity of being an F1 circuit again (being that there’s forest where the old track once stood), not that Donington stands a chance with Silverstone now in favour. Hockenheimring was my favourite track through all my youth until it was castrated 10 years ago. The speeds were amazing and IndyCars massively outweigh F1 cars on top speed now thanks to oval running – personally I’d love to see an oval in F1 but I’ll get my coat before anyone gets wind of that…

    The Red Bull Ring would definitely be most likely out of the 3, personally I’d like to see it on a yearly swapping basis with the Hungaroring (actually ideally just replace it :P), being that it’s the closest race. But as Gregory stated, it would make a good replacement Euro GP since the investment of Red Bull in F1 as a whole (maybe they could twin with a Thai GP? :P).

  2. Holly Craig

    Right guys, my vote went to the Red-Bull ring as I believe out of the 3 it would be the most equipt to easily absorb into the current calendar!

    I do however feel torn as Hockenheim was a firm favourite as a teen and to me would make a much more worthy European GP that the current lack- lustre attempts of Valencia (Zzzzzz).

    Finally getting to Donington Park! I’m yet to find a true F1 fan that wouldn’t want to see Donington back in play, however this remains unpopular as a replacement for Silverstone. Mr Marshall adds the interesting idea of having 2 UK-based Grand Prix’s – an idea that is by no means far fetched given the sports popularity over here!

    With a race calendar that is beginning to burst at the seams this may be a dream in the short term, but consider the idea of holding a sort of ‘F1 showcase’ at Donington out of the race season? It would be a great idea when talking of generating revenue and sport-popularity and also allow Donington Park to reclaim the piece of F1 action a great circuit truly deserves!

    Look what youve done, I’m now debating with myself! 🙂

    1. Damien @ GrandPrixAdvisor

      Indeed. #Dullencia is such a dread.

      I know that watching race at this track year after year and expecting to be more entertaining than the previous year is very close to Enistein’s definition of insanity.
      Somehow, I feel myself glued in front of the TV. Although admittedly, I fell asleep on the couch after Webbo’s pit stop this year.

      (European rounds start at 10pm Sydney time in case you’rre wondering).

  3. Damien @ GrandPrixAdvisor

    If I had it my way, I would say Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez in Mexico – fabulous track.

    As for the three on offer, I have answered the A1 ring (or Red Bull ring). Great little track with blind pit exit and a very steep and sharp first two corners.(a lot of cars touching each other over there on the first few lap of a race back in the early noughties).

    I never really thought the old Hockenheimring was that special beyond the stadium. The new track is much more entertaining.

    I barely have any memory from Donnington, so can’t tell if I really miss it to be honest.

    1. Gary Marshall Post author

      I initial choice was the Autodrommo Hermanos Rodriguez as I have great memories from the late eighties and early nineties but sentiment got the better of me. Donington is the closest track to where I live and seeing the turmoil its been through over the past few years I would love to see F1 cars thunder around there once again. As i said above I don’t want to take the BGP away from Silverstone but I believe that Britain is is in a better position to host two Grand Prix due to the size of the fan base compared to other countries.

  4. Bootneck

    But if I cools choose I’d say the old full Nurburgring, that’d sort the men from the boys:)

  5. Bootneck

    But if I could choose I’d say the old full Nurburgring, that’d sort the men from the boys:)

  6. Ben

    I’d love to see Donnington return, as I went there for the HSCC event their this year and it was a total mess, but money speaks and they seem like they are unlikely to get it back to an F1 state anytime soon. Brands Hatch is my favorite course on the HSCC and BTCC calendar as it offers a fantastic track layout with almost unparalled viewing facilities. Having set my self up with the SLR and a deckchair on the infield section of turn two & three, you get within 5-10m of the cars and get some awesome views. The Red Bull Ring gets my vote in this pole, as the flowing course would lead to some nice chases and with a nice DRS zone some offering an added bonus.

  7. Oliver Dawson

    Living in the UK. I’m obviously biased, but Brands Hatch is a brilliant spectator’s circuit. You’d get your money’s worth there- being able to see most of the course from the surrounding hills.

    Goodwood is fantastic every September at the Revival, but it is like a mini Silverstone.

    But I would be amazing to see modern F1 machinery around the FULL Monza figure of 8 circuit which would include both banked corners of the oval.

    But out of the three listed in the article- Donington Park, but the really old 1930’s circuit with the longer Melbourne loop.

  8. jabjamesf40

    The only reason I’m going for Hokenheim (old) is I remember that race in 2000 and it was epic! One part of the track was heavy rain and the other half was dry! Barrichello drove a blinder and I had no voice left for 2 days after that. Though Brands Hatch was my first ever F1 race that I went to in 1986, and I still say the GP track is one of the best in the country, though I know it will never return to the F1 calendar. It will always have a place in my heart, for getting me hooked on F1

  9. IrishChristof

    Is it just me or is this season 1992? (except RBRs are Williams- they’re kinda the same colour)
    Vettel is Mansell, the man destined to win the title.
    Webber is Patrese, an okay driver with the best car.
    Hamilton is Senna, the most aggressive and hungry driver out there, but has a very poor car by comparison.
    Button is Berger, the jokey friendly one that everyone likes.
    Alonso is Alesi, looked better as a younger driver than he does now.
    Any other comparisons?

    1. Damien @ GrandPrixAdvisor

      Alesi, my teenagehood hero never got a winning car. His only win came out of attrition, so no, you cannot compare Alonso and Alesi. (I must also admit despite my admiration for Alesi’s flamboyant driving style, Alonso is a far better driver).

      I can see the connection with most others although – good thinking.

  10. Damien @ GrandPrixAdvisor

    Yesterday, I was looking back at my DVD season reviews and a few more circuits crop up to mind.

    The first one is the Fuji Speedway. I attended the drenched race in 2007. I’m glad that didn’t put off my partner attending more races. It has a very fast flowing nature and the cars were at th limit of the grip in turns 3, 4 and 5.

    And what about Adelaide! Yes, the track is still used for the V8 Supercars for the Clipsal 500 but Formula 1 is sadly missed over there.


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