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Criticism of new layout Singapore: 'I find that mind boggling'

Criticism of new layout Singapore: 'I find that mind boggling'

15 September - 07:02 Last update: 08:58

Former driver Johnny Herbert is not a fan of the changes at Singapore's Marina Bay circuit. The 2023 edition of the race will be run with a number of modifications in the third sector of the track, made to encourage overtaking. Herbert sees no added value in this, however, and wonders aloud to Grosvenor Sport why the street circuit had to be modified.

New Marina Bay circuit layout

The Singapore race is known as a physically demanding circuit, mainly because of the high temperatures and the many corners. For the race this coming weekend, the organisers have taken the slow third sector of the circuit in hand. Turns 16 to 19, for instance, have given way to a 397.9-metre straight to encourage overtaking on this part of the track.

Former Formula 1 driver Herbert does not like this modification. "Which frustrates me is the fact they have actually changed the track by taking out a couple of corners. By doing that it will help the tyre degradation which I find ridiculous," he began. "They have changed the track to make it easier for the tyres to last. That is not the point. It has to be tough to drive, it has to be mentally and physically very tough. It becomes mentally tough when the tyre is not able to last even a lap. Why have they done that? I find it mind boggling that they do things that will benefit the teams because they can control the tyres better."

Herbert: 'Why take away the challenge?'

In addition, Herbert also sees that the track modifications will take away some of the challenge for drivers. The former driver thinks extra challenge is actually a good thing and sees nothing wrong with adding a new straight:"Even when I raced that was not part of the game. It is about being able to start the lap in such a way that you had a tyre at the end of that one lap. That is part of the skill of the driver and the challenge. Why would you take the challenge away? I really don’t know."

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