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Lesser-Spotted Circuit Variants


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#1 Ben1445

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 10:45

Many racing circuits have different layout variants. Grand Prix circuit, International circuit, National circuit, North Loop, South Loop, Short Course with Chicane, Variant 15a... some even have multiple pit-lanes and paddocks so that they can cater for different layouts simultaneously.

 

But how often do they all get used? 

 

This question actually came to me when I was trying - unsuccessfully, as it turned out - to find some sort of broadcast/onboard video of an event using Shanghai's West Long variant ahead of Formula E's use of it last weekend. Try as I might I couldn't find any real-world (not sim racing) seres or event which made use of that last chicane which cut out the long back straight. Doesn't mean there isn't one... I just couldn't find any. 

 

And that got me thinking a bit about all the other variants that exist at various tracks. Has anyone used the used the Monza 'Junior Course' in recent years? What about the 'Short Source with Alt T4' at Buddh International? How often has Silverstone's current 'International Circuit' been used? 

 

I mean there are loads and loads...  and loads. So I thought it might be kind of fun to make a thread out of it. 

 

 

 

To get started, here's a lap of Yas Marina's North Circuit Corkscrew in a Radical SR3

 

 

 



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#2 Stephane

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:22

There's a longer version of the Nurburgring circuit often in use, i think

#3 IrvTheSwerve

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:25

Obviously it's partially an FIA grade issue but it's such a shame that F1 doesn't use some of these short, quirky versions especially for Sprint weekends. I can't stand Sprints but would be infinitely more interested in them if they used a different config - it would be different to see them putting in laps of 30 seconds around a smaller track.



#4 krapmeister

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:28

V8Supercars raced on the shortened 'National' circuit configuration at COTA back in 2013...

https://m.youtube.co...h?v=SgcEqOO0Hr8

#5 NewMrMe

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:29

As well as Silverstone's International circuit, does the Stowe circuit ever get used for racing.

 

Other than racing, another factor for different circuit configurations is that it allows multiple events to take place at the same time on different variants. For example, when I did a single seater driving experience at Silverstone, that was using the Stowe circuit. A Ferrari road car driving experience was using the National circuit and a Caterham championship was having a test day on the International.

 

I would also like to see F1 try other circuit configurations. It could add some variety to sprint races if they have to have them. I though the experiment with the Bahrain Outer circuit worked quite well.


Edited by NewMrMe, 29 May 2024 - 11:30.


#6 Risil

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:32

I choose to believe they raced on the Bahrain outer circuit in 2020 because of our pressure campaign on here.

#7 krapmeister

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:35

V8Supercars also raced on the shorter 'Paddock' layout at Bahrain for 3 years from 2006 to 2008. They used the full Grand Prix track in 2010...

https://m.youtube.co...h?v=iXpcvT9E-CA

They also did a one off race in China in 2005, using a shorter configuration of the circuit...

https://en.m.wikiped...ars_China_Round

https://m.youtube.co...h?v=1Ax43tB9rM4

They also raced on a shorter layout at Yas Marina Abu Dhabi in 2010/11 (in 2012 they were supporting the F1 so used the full circuit):

https://m.youtube.co...h?v=9XVaQo3zv_c

Edit: just realised this is the same layout that was posted in the OP

Edited by krapmeister, 29 May 2024 - 12:23.


#8 Ben1445

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:35

The 750 Motor Club does use the Silverstone International layout for racing, I see. The 2022 broadcast can be found here (1:15:50 for the 750 Formula Race). 

 


Edited by Ben1445, 29 May 2024 - 11:37.


#9 Ben1445

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:53

The wonderfully short Nurburgring Müllenbachschleife (the short loop at the south end of the GP track) seems to have fairly regular usage 

 



#10 Ben1445

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 11:56

They also did a one off race in China in 2005, using a shorter configuration of the circuit...

https://en.m.wikiped...ars_China_Round

This layout at Shanghai was also used by A1GP and WTCC 



#11 Beri

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 12:11


Many racing circuits have different layout variants. Grand Prix circuit, International circuit, National circuit, North Loop, South Loop, Short Course with Chicane, Variant 15a... some even have multiple pit-lanes and paddocks so that they can cater for different layouts simultaneously.
 
But how often do they all get used?
 
This question actually came to me when I was trying - unsuccessfully, as it turned out - to find some sort of broadcast/onboard video of an event using Shanghai's West Long variant ahead of Formula E's use of it last weekend. Try as I might I couldn't find any real-world (not sim racing) seres or event which made use of that last chicane which cut out the long back straight. Doesn't mean there isn't one... I just couldn't find any. 
 
And that got me thinking a bit about all the other variants that exist at various tracks. Has anyone used the used the Monza 'Junior Course' in recent years? What about the 'Short Source with Alt T4' at Buddh International? How often has Silverstone's current 'International Circuit' been used? 
 
I mean there are loads and loads...  and loads. So I thought it might be kind of fun to make a thread out of it. 
 
 
 
To get started, here's a lap of Yas Marina's North Circuit Corkscrew in a Radical SR3
 
 
Wait, what?!? There is actual elevation change at Abu Dhabi?
 
Anywho, Zandvoort ran a shortened layout after 1988 till it gained its length again in its current form by 1999. In 1988 Zandvoort had lost the Grand Prix for some years already. This resulted in declining visitor numbers overall and subsequently this caused Zandvoort to run into financial difficulties. So Zandvoort decided it was cheaper to not maintain a 2.6 mile circuit anymore, but rather a 1.5 mile circuit. Also part of the circuit lands were sold to get out of the financial difficulties. Hence why the current layout wasnt rebuild to the old spec and isnt as fast and flowing on a spread out circuit anymore. The grounds that used to house iconic corners like Hondenvlak, Tunnel Oost (the one where Roger Williamson died) and Pullevelt, are now being used for a golf course and a holiday resort.
But for some 10 years, Zandvoort ran the following layout. Consisting of the current corners that we know from the Tarzan through the Gerlach and the Hugenholtz, before a 180 degree righthand hairpin like corner fed right into the current Hans Ernst corner, the Kumho corner and Bosuit (now the Arie Luyendyk corner) to complete the lap. This variant is still available till this day. But hardly used anymore.
 
Here is Jos Verstappen throwing in a demo run in his Footwork (or was it Arrows?  :p ) during the 1996 Marlboro Masters of Zandvoort.
 


#12 Collombin

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 12:32

There's a longer version of the Nurburgring circuit often in use, i think


That's timely, thank you, I would have missed it - the Nürburgring 24 Hours is this weekend, around the combined Nordschleife and Ersatzring.

#13 Beri

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 12:36

I suspect there being more footage on YouTube of the Nordschleife rather than footage of the "Ersatzring". So hardly a variant that is "lesser spotted".



#14 Collombin

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 12:43

I suspect there being more footage on YouTube of the Nordschleife rather than footage of the "Ersatzring"


True I'm sure, but I bet 99% of it is either of Adenauer Forst or Brünnchen.

#15 Peat

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 12:48

I've been at Silverstone when the National & International layouts were in use by separate events. 

Made for a quite a varied day of spectating. 


Edited by Peat, 29 May 2024 - 12:49.


#16 chdphd

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 12:58

The DTM used to favour shorter circuit variants. Here's them at Barcelona in 2007

 



#17 Bleu

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 13:28

Back when Hockenheim GP circuit was still the blast through the forest, DTM used to race in shorter variant where the circuit turned right soon after first corner and returned quickly to the stadium section. In several years, there were two races in Hockenheim, one in the GP circuit and one in the shorter version.

 



#18 Stephane

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 13:29

I suspect there being more footage on YouTube of the Nordschleife rather than footage of the "Ersatzring". So hardly a variant that is "lesser spotted".

 

That was the joke, yes



#19 LolaB0860

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 15:51

the Nürburgring 24 Hours is this weekend, around the combined Nordschleife and Ersatzring.

 

But the N24 circuit does not use the boring 'Mercedes Arena' section of the GP loop



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#20 Risil

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 15:52

NASCAR did a couple of races at Suzuka in the 90s where they turned right instead of left after the "Snake" corners and joined back up with the pits to make a short lap.

#21 Stephane

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 15:58

NASCAR did a couple of races at Suzuka in the 90s where they turned right instead of left after the "Snake" corners and joined back up with the pits to make a short lap.

Wtcc used that layout also.

#22 Beri

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 16:49

Back when Hockenheim GP circuit was still the blast through the forest, DTM used to race in shorter variant where the circuit turned right soon after first corner and returned quickly to the stadium section. In several years, there were two races in Hockenheim, one in the GP circuit and one in the shorter version.

https://www.youtube....el=Truenorock89

That track is still there. But this is also hardly used anymore as there is another variant available. But that circuit was already and is now mostly used as an access road to the paddock as well as access to the Mercedes stands and the Motodrom stands.

Edited by Beri, 29 May 2024 - 17:02.


#23 Dan333SP

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 17:27

Thinking of Monza, many here have seen the testing videos of Audi during the LMP1 diesel era running the GP circuit layout without the first chicane so the cars are coming into Curva Grande at 220+ mph. For obvious reasons this hasn't been used for any major racing events since the chicanes were installed in the 70s. 

 

 

I think the world rallycross events there have also used a very short circuit with a hairpin on the main straight and at least part of the old banking used as well. 


Edited by Dan333SP, 29 May 2024 - 17:28.


#24 Yamamoto

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 17:32

I've been at Silverstone when the National & International layouts were in use by separate events. 

Made for a quite a varied day of spectating. 

 

Presumably not at the same time?



#25 Mark A

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 17:56

Presumably not at the same time?

 

They can be used at the same time, national uses the old pits and turns right at the entry to the Becketts complex, International uses the Wing pits and turns right at the loop



#26 Mark A

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 18:01

As well as Silverstone's International circuit, does the Stowe circuit ever get used for racing.

 

 

I don't believe it has a license for racing but may be wrong, I think it does have one for sprints.



#27 Dolph

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 18:30

I've been at Silverstone when the National & International layouts were in use by separate events. 

Made for a quite a varied day of spectating. 

 

 

What events were they?



#28 Stoffel

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 18:32

This talk about Silverstone and it’s variants got me wondering, is the old lay-out (Bridge/Priory) still occasionally used? I know the track is still there.



#29 Afterburner

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 18:43

I know a shortened version of Road Atlanta, involving a cut-through made by going right instead of left at Turn 5, existed in Forza Motorsport but I never heard of any racing series ever running that configuration.

#30 chdphd

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 18:54

I don't believe it has a license for racing but may be wrong, I think it does have one for sprints.

 

The BTCC  were going to use it but covid got in the way.



#31 LolaB0860

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 19:12

There have been recent/recent-ish events where they've run almost completely different circuits during the same overall event:

- IndyCar & NASCAR joint-up, Indianapolis Road Course vs Speedway

- Nurburgring 24h: some of the supports (like British GT) used GP Streche only while the main series and other supports sticked to Nordschleife+GP

- Some years ago they used to have (or maybe they still do, I don't care anymore) optional Le Mans Bugatti Test between LM Test Day and LM 24 Hours,  you know the Tuesday before Wednesday's FP and Q1

- Daytona 500 used to have this thing for their smaller series: https://en.wikipedia...le_at_the_Beach


Edited by LolaB0860, 29 May 2024 - 19:14.


#32 LolaB0860

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 19:16

Anyway... as for the question since nobody mentioned it yet, the Sebring short course Indycar always uses for testing, for some reason

 


Edited by LolaB0860, 29 May 2024 - 19:18.


#33 Peat

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 20:07

What events were they?


IIRC, I was there to see some friends in historic single seaters (FF2000, F2/Atlantics) which were on the National circuit and there was some kind of Track Attack event/Track Day going on the International.

The pits are each accessed by car bridges over the Wellington and Hangar straights respectively, so both tracks can run at the same time

#34 noriaki

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 20:28

Anyway... as for the question since nobody mentioned it yet, the Sebring short course Indycar always uses for testing, for some reason

 

 

The full course is even bumpier



#35 Yamamoto

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Posted 29 May 2024 - 22:09

They can be used at the same time, national uses the old pits and turns right at the entry to the Becketts complex, International uses the Wing pits and turns right at the loop

 

Ta, I think I conflated international and GP in my head.



#36 Bleu

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 06:46

Ta, I think I conflated international and GP in my head.

 

Before the new pit complex, international layout was this.

 

Silverstone03-09International.png



#37 Mark A

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 06:53

Back then you could run the National which went from Maggotts to Brooklands direct like it does today and was it the south circuit (I actually can't remember what it was called), 



#38 Beri

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 06:55

Club?



#39 Peat

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 06:55

Before the new pit complex, international layout was this.

 

Silverstone03-09International.png

 

That was a good track. Used to enjoy watching BTCC and the support races at the Abbey hairpin.



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#40 Mark A

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 06:56

On the subject of circuit variants, the other one in the UK with a rarely used layout today is Knockhill.

I think it rarely gets used in an anti-clockwise direction nowadays.



#41 Mark A

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 06:56

Club?

 

 

Could be.



#42 Peat

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:04

This talk about Silverstone and it’s variants got me wondering, is the old lay-out (Bridge/Priory) still occasionally used? I know the track is still there.

 

Sadly not, it's sort of still there but very much decomissioned. https://maps.app.goo...jJqQH1iUgo7tyG8

It's been landscaped into a 'fan village' for the big events. 



#43 Peat

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:05

On the subject of circuit variants, the other one in the UK with a rarely used layout today is Knockhill.

I think it rarely gets used in an anti-clockwise direction nowadays.

 


 

Bonkers!



#44 PayasYouRace

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:07

Back then you could run the National which went from Maggotts to Brooklands direct like it does today and was it the south circuit (I actually can't remember what it was called), 

The South Circuit was the one using the Abbey-Becketts link effectively in the way the current International Circuit does. As it had no pit lane, it was used for track days, racing schools, etc. Access was via the Stowe paddock area.

 

 

Club?

The Club Circuit at Silverstone was much like the National, but instead of turning right at Brooklands, it continued straight and tuned right at Woodcote. It was the only short layout prior to the 1987 revisions which brought us Luffield, and could be used up to 1993.



#45 Peat

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:21

More Silverstone:

Screenshot-2024-05-30-082049.png

Never ever seen that layout used. 



#46 Ben1445

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:22

Edit: Beaten to it! 

 

There's definitely the tarmac there for it, but it doesn't have any paint for track edges and I haven't found evidence of it being used at an event thus far 
Long-National.png


Edited by Ben1445, 30 May 2024 - 07:22.


#47 Ben1445

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:38

Sadly not, it's sort of still there but very much decomissioned. https://maps.app.goo...jJqQH1iUgo7tyG8

It's been landscaped into a 'fan village' for the big events.

There was a planning application to build a karting track over it, but I'm not sure if that has advanced any further. 

 

Edit: Approved in July 2023 https://www.bbc.co.u...nshire-66138889

 

9-CD01246-2-C44-4683-83-E8-9-F6210708378


Edited by Ben1445, 30 May 2024 - 07:40.


#48 Ben1445

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 07:44

In terms of the Monza Junior Circuit (or Pista Junior), this is the most recent use I have been able to find from 2009: 

 

 

Monza-Junior10.png


Edited by Ben1445, 30 May 2024 - 08:11.


#49 Ben1445

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 08:10

I have also found a use of the Short Course 1 at Buddh International - T1 Prima Truck Racing: 

 

 

Buddh-International-Circuit-Short1-2011.



#50 noikeee

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Posted 30 May 2024 - 08:22

In terms of the Monza Junior Circuit (or Pista Junior), this is the most recent use I have been able to find from 2009:

https://www.youtube....h?v=t3keu049v8s

Monza-Junior10.png


Pffft, I drove it in iRacing just last year. :p