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The Sad State of the A1-Ring


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#1 BRG

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 17:09

During a trip to Austria last week, I was driving from Graz to Salzburg when I noticed a road-sign for Zeltweg. As it was only 5km away, I took a detour to look at the A1-Ring. Unfortuantely, I did not have a camera with me so I must describe what I found in words only

What a shock! The ‘new’ track is now almost as derelict as the old Oesterreichring. Every building, bar the turn 1 grandstands and the emergency HQ has been levelled. The whole pit and paddock complex has gone, just piles of debris remain. And the track has been cut right through (probably to allow better access for trucks) presumably where the tunnel to the centre was. The rest of the circuit is depressingly untended – in fact the remains of the old track, which are still visible and accessible if you are prepared to make the effort, look in little worse condition despite 15 or more years of abandonment.

Does anyone know if this the final death for this track or is something planned. I recall there were some Red Bull plans for the track, but there is no sign of any Red Bull involvement at the moment. If they are rebuilding the track, you would think it would have large signs boasting about it! But there are none.

I know many of us decried the A1-Ring as a pale shadow of the red-blooded O-Ring, but I always rather liked it. Have we now lost both?

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#2 Michael Müller

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 17:30

Even the website is inactive...
http://www.a1ring.at/

#3 Paul Taylor

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 17:32

I hope they are doing the same to the A1-Ring as they did with Bathurst - completely rebuild the pitcomplex, and everything along that straight. They can repave it while they are at it.

Is there any chance whatsoever of them repaving the OLD circuit for use in modern racing?

#4 Monstrobolaxa

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 17:41

Weren't they going to make a park out of the A1-Ring track?

#5 MCH

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 17:47

Damn :(

Even the new track wasn't half bad in my opinion, what a shame. :cry:

#6 Michael Müller

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 18:00

Surfed somewhat through the web, and in fact it's luckily a rebuild and no scrapping.
Owner of the track now is Red Bull, and the new plans are gigantic.
http://www.rsr-forum.../a1ring_neu.jpg
Even a part of the old track will be integrated into the new one, making a total length of abt. 9 kms.
However, reopening 2005 has been scrapped, now it seems to be 2006 at earliest.

#7 Geza Sury

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 18:18

Originally posted by Michael Müller
Surfed somewhat through the web, and in fact it's luckily a rebuild and no scrapping.
Owner of the track now is Red Bull, and the new plans are gigantic.
http://www.rsr-forum.../a1ring_neu.jpg
Even a part of the old track will be integrated into the new one, making a total length of abt. 9 kms.
However, reopening 2005 has been scrapped, now it seems to be 2006 at earliest.

Wow! This plan looks awesome!

#8 Ray Bell

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 21:10

Indeed... is this the first positive step in European circuits since Spa was shortened?

#9 Barry Boor

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 21:50

While I applaud the plans, I can't help but get the feeling that even if this track were to host an F.1 race in the future, they wouldn't use the longest variation shown on this map. Too long, you see.....

Bernie likes short laps and lots of them; even Shanghai is only a shade over 3 miles; this one is closer to 6.

But I must agree with Ray, it's certainly a positive step. It gets rid of that silly turn 2 too. :up:

#10 Michael Müller

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Posted 04 October 2004 - 22:00

My interpretation of the map is that the old part of the Österreichring is considered as separate track with own paddock, possibly for club races or similar. And for special events like e.g. endurance races or similar both tracks can be coupled together.

#11 JohnH

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Posted 05 October 2004 - 08:56

Originally posted by MCH
Damn :(

Even the new track wasn't half bad in my opinion, what a shame. :cry:



I thought it was a great track, compared to stuff like Hungararong, New Nurburgring, and the average new modern circuits. Obviously, not great like Spa or Suzuka but it was interesting.
I don't understand the criticisms. By the way what was the reason the GP was dropped?

John

#12 BRG

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Posted 05 October 2004 - 09:45

If these Red Bull plans are going to happen, then it is good news.

But I must say, I saw no signs of any new works at all, just demolition. It was a weekday when I visited but there was no-one on the site working. And there is no Red Bull signage, which seems strange. If you were funding a major refurbishment of this sort, wouldn't you be shouting it to the heavens? Maybe it is an Austrian thing or planning rules or something...

#13 Seebar

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Posted 14 October 2004 - 14:34

Originally posted by Michael Müller
Surfed somewhat through the web, and in fact it's luckily a rebuild and no scrapping.
Owner of the track now is Red Bull, and the new plans are gigantic.
http://www.rsr-forum.../a1ring_neu.jpg
Even a part of the old track will be integrated into the new one, making a total length of abt. 9 kms.
However, reopening 2005 has been scrapped, now it seems to be 2006 at earliest.


They can even make three separate circuits if I read the plan well, looks nice! I just don't get "Paddock" near the number 10 in the middle? They already have "Boxen/Fahrerlager" (number 3).

Now get rid of names like Mobilkomkurve...(I know the old Ring had corners named after sponsors as well, but even Sebring-Auspuffkurve or Hella-Lichtschikane had something. Can't really put my finger on it, maybe they just sound German to me.)

#14 Ruairidh

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Posted 14 October 2004 - 14:40

Originally posted by BRG
If these Red Bull plans are going to happen, then it is good news.

But I must say, I saw no signs of any new works at all, just demolition. It was a weekday when I visited but there was no-one on the site working. And there is no Red Bull signage, which seems strange. If you were funding a major refurbishment of this sort, wouldn't you be shouting it to the heavens? Maybe it is an Austrian thing or planning rules or something...


I've seen comment (I think by Bira) elsewhere (in connection with the sale of Jag and Cosworth racing IIRC) that RedBull like to make big sounds about what they are gonna do - milk the publicity for that while not following through on big investments. Wonder if this is more of the same?

#15 BRG

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Posted 14 October 2004 - 15:12

That was the strange thing to my mind. If Red Bull are going to extensively rebuild the Ring, you would expect, at the very least, a big board at the entracne saying so and lauding how many euros they are spending. Even the most modest development usually has that - with a kist of contractors and consultants and so on But there was nothing at all that I could see. Nor was their a single workman on the site. I have a bad feeling about it...

#16 Garagiste

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 11:32

With good reason - they've pulled the plug:
http://www.atlasf1.c.../id/14999/.html

Envionmental objections apparently, must just be co-incidence that it's announced just after they secure a far more efficient means of wasting money... :

#17 dmj

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 12:03

I'm fairly sceptical with whole Red Bull involment in motorsport. Don't believe they have financial strength needed to be competitive in todays F1 world.

#18 BRG

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 13:22

It seems we have the Arbesser Rastburg family and Dieter Red Bull to thank jointly for this.

Red Bull march in, demolish everything in sight and render the track unusable, whilst the locals object to Red Bull's ambitious plans, leading them to walk away. Leaving the A1-Ring and the OesterreichRing both equally derelict. Now, thanks to Red Bull, the track cannot even be used for the occasional meeting, since the circuit is incomplete and there are zero facilities on site. What a blow for Austrian motorsport!

#19 AndreasF1

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 13:35

DMJ wrote:

Don't believe they have financial strength needed to be competitive in todays F1 world


_________________________________________________________________
:rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:

You have to be crazy to make a statement like that. Red Bull makes more money than you can shake a stick at. I know first hand because one of my best friend works for them in Austria.
He nets about $50 cents per can net profit. So if they sold 2 Billion cans last year you do the math.
And besides that they have almost no overhead to begin with. Red Bull does not do inhouse filling of the cans. It is all done through outsourcing.

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#20 Pinchevsky Moshe

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 13:47

When internal politics in Belgium made F1 leave Spa in 2003, I was amazed by that "shot its own foot" situation. However, the locals at Spa fought and brought F1 back. Here the situation is beyond understanding. Why would the locals do this to themselves?!? IIRC, local fights over parking fees were the real reason F1 left the A-Ring in the first place during the late 80's. Shooting yourself once is bad, but twice...

#21 BuzzingHornet

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 14:10

Sounds pretty shambolic...

Its funny, layout-wise the A1 Ring was a pretty anaemic version of the O-ring but it used to throw up some good races, and looked pretty on TV, i'm surprised that Bernie didnt like it. although he seems to be on a mission to get a whole calender full of Tilke go-kart tracks...

(btw hello to my old buddy Moshe :) )