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Multiple Safety Changes to the Jeddah Street circuit

The Jeddah Street Circuit will look a bit different this time around

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Ahead of the third Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, multiple safety changes have been made to the Jeddah Street Circuit.

Jeddah’s street circuit is notoriously difficult and safety has always been a question. Ahead of the third instalment of the race, there have been some safety changes. Image Credit: Formula1.com

Over the winter break, Jeddah’s circuit has undergone some changes to better ensure the drivers’ safety. Since the race has already been held twice, the organisers and designers came to the conclusion that changes needed to be made to put the drivers at ease and ensure safer racing.

“[The Jeddah changes aim]to deliver smoother, safer, and [an] even more exciting racing”

There have also been other, aesthetic changes to the Jeddah circuit which will benefit fans and visitors.

Changes to Sightlines

As reported by PlanetF1.com, Martin Whittaker has overseen changes to fencing, barriers, kerbs and the corners themselves. Whittaker, the CEO of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix has described the only track nature change which was the width of the track around turns 22 and 23.

The turn, which is towards the end of the lap has been “tightened” and will effectively slow drivers down as they enter the fast-paced long curve. This then leads to the start/ finish straight. By Whittaker’s estimations, drivers will be going into turn 22 and 23 around 30 kilometres per hour slower than the last Grand Prix.

In relation to the lap times, Whittaker stated that the laps will be “reduced somewhat” however he believes the improved sightline from the change will give drivers greater confidence to go even faster.

We might see even greater speeds through some of the corners”

In other parts of the track, sightlines will also be improved as the organisers have moved the fencing back.

“On five of the corners, we’ve moved the fences back by anything between two and seven metres. So in some places, it’s quite a marked change to the overall look and feel of the circuit”.

New Kerbs

On top of improvements to drivers’ sightlines, changes to the kerbs have been introduced as one of the key safety changes to the Jeddah street circuit. Last year, Mick Schumacher suffered a horrendous crash and when asked about it Whittaker admitted that they have changed the kerbs in response.

The kerbs now have a less intense gradient. They’re also much smoother for the cars to drive over. After being promoted, Whittaker stated, “We’ve changed pretty much all of the kerbs as well. They’re much smoother up and a much-decreased angle.”

All the safety changes listed above were done in collaboration with F1’s wishes. Do you think the changes will make the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix better? We’ll get our first glimpse at the changes during FP1. The race weekend begins on Friday the 17th of March.

Feature Image: Motorsport.com

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