Singapore Grand Prix circuit challenges drivers and assemblers
Constructed and deconstructed in the heart of a busy functioning city each year, the circuit’s completion is a monumental task – both for engineers and race drivers
The Singapore Grand Prix circuit is a state-of-the-art engineering marvel, and assembling the circuit within the busiest parts of a city is not a straightforward operation.
“The two biggest initial challenges were developing a lighting system to meet the stringent safety requirements of the FIA [Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile], and [figuring out how to] assemble and disassemble a temporary street circuit in just a few months – all with minimal disruption,” says Colin Syn, deputy chairman of Singapore GP.
The trick, he explains, is to “strike a balance” between letting the city go about its daily business while creating the event within it.
Once assembled, the 5km track has 23 challenging corners. “The track layout has some nice features, but the first sector stands out for me – especially the fast right-hand kink of turn six and the braking zone of turn seven,” says Nico Hülkenberg, driver for the Renault Sport F1 team, who set the fastest lap in the 2012 Singapore Grand Prix.
With the Marina Bay Street Circuit lit up and ready for action, thisis one of the most anticipated racing events of the year.
“It’s a challenging race, particularly on the brakes,” says AMG Petronas F1 Team executive director (technical), Paddy Lowe. “The layout makes overtaking a difficult task, often resulting in action-packed races, with unsuccessful passing attempts leaving debris on the track.”