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A stroll around Caracalla


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#1 Barry Boor

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 20:54

I hope this is not going to be a total and utter failure. I have trolled through my video of the track and have grabbed 35 stills. On the map you see below, you will find red numbers (denoting the corners) and black letters with little arrows by them (referring to the images and the direction that I was looking at the time.)

Remember that the track is anti-clockwise.

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The description to each image is ABOVE the image.

A - taken looking down towards turn 1, from roughly where I imagine the start/finish line would have been.
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B - the apex of turn 1 - a hairpin. Just 100 metres to my left was the Circus Maximus.
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C - looking back towards turn 1 from the inside of the circuit.
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D - looking back from just before turn 2, again from the inside.
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E - looking back from the entrance to turn 2.
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F - Brother-in-Law Mick is standing on the apex of turn 2.
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G - the exit of turn 2 looking towards turn 3.
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H - Looking back towards turn 2 from the outside of 3. Just right of centre you can see the gap which is turn 2.
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I - In this area I have a feeling that the road may have been changed since 1949! I confess to having modified the track map to look as it does now. The original from Darren's site has a curve where this section is straight, but I found no evidence of it. This image shows the approach to turn 4, which turns right just after the blue and white cubicles which I suspect were NOT there in the late 40s!
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I remember being told some time ago not to put too many images on one post so I will stop here for the moment and then make a new post to continue the lap.

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#2 Barry Boor

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 21:22

I am including the map again, to save members from having to drag right up to the top of the thread again.

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....to continue......

J - looking back towards turn 3 from the entrance to turn 4
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K - looking back towards the exit of turn 4. This is the prettiest section of the circuit.
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I spotted these in the vicinity of images K & M - I get the feeling that way back in the 40s, the circuit, or at least parts of it, may have been surfaced like this!
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M - looking uphill through the wooded section before turn 5.
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N - just before the right-hander at turn 5.
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O - looking back down from the opposite side of the road to where N was taken.
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P - from the outside of turn 5 looking up the road towards turn 6.
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R - looking back towards turn 5 about half way to 6.
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S - taken from what would have been around the braking area for turn 6 - another 180 degree hairpin.
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There is another 10 (including the map. I think that's enough for tonight, I'll complete the lap tomorrow.

#3 fines

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 21:37

Originally posted by Barry Boor
I am including the map again, to save members from having to drag right up to the top of the thread again.

Reading this just after scrolling back from picture "I" to the top and then down again! :lol:

Seriously though, nice pictures, Barry! :up:

Strange though that most are "looking back at..." :p ;)

#4 fines

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 21:39

And I can't help but the circuit map reminds me of the old Österreichring... :drunk:

#5 Barry Boor

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 21:46

Strange though that most are "looking back at..."



No, fines, not so strange if you had noticed the first Caracalla thread I put up at the weekend where I admitted to having walked the WRONG way around the track due to making the (FALSE) assumption that it was clockwise and not finding out until I got home that it wasn't. :blush:

#6 Racer.Demon

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 22:28

Barry,

Will you be giving these pictures a more permanent place for future reference instead of just this thread? Like your own website?

#7 canon1753

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Posted 10 June 2003 - 23:27

Wasn't there a thought in the 80's of running a Rome GP at the Baths of Caracalla? I seem to remember reading that at the time. The slot was taken by the European GP.

#8 Barry Boor

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 09:53

Mattijs, that's a good idea. I will certainly try to organise it if you think it is of value.

#9 Racer.Demon

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 10:46

Barry: it is of value!

Here is some inspiration:

http://8w.forix.com/bdb.html

And some slighter lesser attempts:

http://8w.forix.com/6thgear/rouen.html
http://8w.forix.com/6thgear/reims.html
http://8w.forix.com/6thgear/spa.html

Anyway, you will probably know them.;)

#10 fines

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 14:54

Originally posted by Barry Boor
No, fines, not so strange if you had noticed the first Caracalla thread I put up at the weekend where I admitted to having walked the WRONG way around the track due to making the (FALSE) assumption that it was clockwise and not finding out until I got home that it wasn't. :blush:

[I [i]had[/i] noticed, I was just rubbing it in - Bah, bad me :o]

#11 Rob29

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 20:12

Originally posted by canon1753
Wasn't there a thought in the 80's of running a Rome GP at the Baths of Caracalla? I seem to remember reading that at the time. The slot was taken by the European GP.

I thought that was to have been in a suburb. Curiously the 'EUR' on a signpost in one of Barrys photos seems to ring a bell here.

#12 Racer.Demon

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 21:42

Yes, that has been covered elsewhere on TNF - here to be precise.

It was indeed in EUR, the Roman-style suburb built by Mussolini, which also featured the Tre Fontane track.

#13 Mike Argetsinger

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Posted 11 June 2003 - 22:23

Really great, Barry. Thanks for the posting and sharing all that and for the research and all the other work that went in to it.

#14 Ray Bell

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 08:13

Plenty of colour and fast corners, gives us a good feel for the character of the circuit...

Of course, we have to paint in the throngs of spectators standing on the kerbs and behind the trees for ourselves.





















.....Yes, 'throngs' not 'thongs'... I think they would have had bare feet.....

#15 Barry Boor

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 19:47

I am including the map once again, to save members from having to drag right up to the top of the thread each time.

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......and onwards.....

T - looking across the apex of the top hairpin, turn 6
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U - looking back across the same corner from the other side of the road.
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V - leaving the hairpin
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W - further down the same section with the exit of turn 5 becoming visible through the trees to the left.
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X - the nearest thing to a chicane on this track. Turn 5 is immediately to the left.
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Y - looking back at the left hand part of this little left/right.
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Z - same corner but from further down the road. The exit of turn 5 is on the right.
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AA - heading down the straight towards turn 7.
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BB - looking back down the same section.
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CC - still looking the wrong way, unfortunately but this is the braking area for turn 7.
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Right, that's another section covered. Look for the rest of the lap tomorrow.

#16 Roger Clark

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Posted 12 June 2003 - 22:35

THere is a circuit map in Autocourse (1951) which indicates that the start was earlier on the straight than Barry suggests, virtually at Turn 8.

Here are a couple of picture of the 1951 race, also from Autocourse.

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#17 cabianca

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Posted 13 June 2003 - 05:06

This circuit was closed off and used during the Ferrari 50th Anniversary celebration a few years ago. No actual racing but plenty of hot laps by both vintage and modern Ferraris. My favorites were Marzotto giving his grandkids a hell of a ride in his 53 Mille Miglia-winning Ferrari 340 MM and Schumi in that year's F1 car doing all kinds of crazy burnouts, etc. He and his teammate of the moment also did pit stops. A worthy salute to the track that saw Ferrari's first victory. Needless to say, the sound of the F1 cars on the straight, echoing off the baths, was worth the trip from California to Rome.

#18 Barry Boor

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 08:48

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The rest of the lap.

DD - the last few metres before the turn in to turn 7.
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EE - the apex of turn 7 (see Roger's 2nd image above. This is the same point.)
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FF - and just to prove the point, there are the arches of the city walls in the background.
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GG - this is looking away from turn 7 in the direction of turn 8.
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Now for the bad news.... :( When I came to look at this section of my holiday video, back at home, I found that the section from turn 7 to turn 8 had mysteriously been recorded over. I still cannot explain how this happened. However, there are 3 more pictures to add, all taken down in the vicinity of turn 8.

HH - this is the apex of turn 8.
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JJ - this is a picture that requires careful explanation. What you are looking at is turn 4, (the road coming down on the right of centre) - while I am standing around where the entry to turn 8 must have been. As you can see, there is more than one section of road running up the hill to the left. Clearly this section of road has been widened considerably as the years have passed and so it is somewhat difficult to determine exactly which piece of road follows the old race circuit the closest. I would like to think that maybe it is the narrow section in the centre but probably more likely is that it was somewhere around the line of the very wide piece of road to the far left. Although the 2 branches of the track appear to be very close together, they do diverge further up, as you can see from the map.
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KK -this picture is similar to the one immediately above, but taken from nearer turn 4.
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And that, ladies and gentlemen, is, as they say, that.

Sorry about the missing section (I must go back sometime!!!) I hope this gives a taste of what must have been a very interesting and exciting place to run a motor race.

During the next few weeks I will transfer the video that these images came from, onto a tape, carefully editing it to look as though I was going around the right way, not the wrong! As with my Ospedaletti tape, it will be available to anyone who would like to borrow it.

#19 Catalina Park

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Posted 15 June 2003 - 09:05

Thanks Barry, Great stuff as usual!

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#20 gdecarli

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Posted 02 July 2003 - 21:12

First of all, thank you Barry for your GREAT job.

Terme di Caracalla circuit was used again in 1997 for during the Ferrari 50th Anniversary celebration. This why Ferrari first victory was here on May 25th 1947, driven by Franco Cortese. 1997 parade circuit (green) is quite different from the original circuit (red), as you can see on this approximated map:

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Originally posted by canon1753
Wasn't there a thought in the 80's of running a Rome GP at the Baths of Caracalla? I seem to remember reading that at the time. The slot was taken by the European GP.


European F.1 GP 1985 was scheduled on October 13th 1985 on Roma EUR circuit. I know two different proposals, one made in summer 1984 (brown) and one at end of 1984 (green).

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In Spring 1985 this GP was canceled and European GP moved to Brands Hatch, were it was held on October 6th, one week before scheduled GP at Rome.

More details about both circuits (lenght, corners name, ...) on my website.

Ciao,
Guido

#21 gdecarli

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Posted 13 September 2003 - 01:43

Originally posted by Racer.Demon
Barry,

Will you be giving these pictures a more permanent place for future reference instead of just this thread? Like your own website?

With Barry's permission (of course...) I have just uploaded on my website all these photos and pictures about Monsanto circuit.
If anybody else has any picture of any track, I can host them as well.

Thank you Barry

Ciao,
Guido

#22 Barry Boor

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 19:43

I am approaching my Rome Grand Prix for 1950-51 car series (a fictitious race as there was no F.1 race in either of those two years, only F.2) but I thought I would check to see who raced there when the event took place in 1947.

It was almost a one make event with hordes of Cisitalias and one Ferrari.

What surprised me was that among a field of both well-known and never-heard-of Italians, there in second place behind Taruffi was one George Abecassis. I wonder what drew him to race in that particular 'all-Italian' event.

#23 David McKinney

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 22:49

You will recall that the original Cisitalia concept was of a "travelling circus" of factory-owned cars. I think Rome was originally to be the second of these (after Cairo). Abecassis was supposed to be part of the Egyptian event (together with Reg Parnell and Leslie Johnson), but didn't make it. I always presumed his Rome drive was some sort of compensation

#24 Ray Bell

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 12:39

So that's where the A1 GP concept came from?

But not funded by Middle Eastern interests?

#25 Terry Walker

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 15:37

Damn! When I was in Rome in June last year I could have had a stroll around part of Caracella circuit least, but didn't know it existed. However, my feet were telling me all sorts of stories of misery at the end of each day as it was. So maybe a good thing. Went to Amalfi for a few days instead. Definitely a good thing.

#26 Barry Boor

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 15:41

I felt the same about Montjuic Park when I went there years ago and was wrongly told that nothing of the old circuit was left.

Fortunately, I've been back since and walked it.

#27 Tony Lethbridge

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Posted 05 March 2012 - 10:02

I can't believe I walked some of these roads a couple of years ago and had no idea that it was a circuit. The friends I was with will probably be very relieved!Thanks Barry for broadening my circuit knowledge.