“I’ve never raced in any category at the Istanbul circuit,” said Kvyat, “and, with the current situation, I’ve not even been able to try it on the simulator, so I will be really starting from zero.”
Kvyat has at least been able to study the layout from videos of past races at the track. “Of course I know where the corners go and have watched old races from there,” he said. “I know it runs anti-clockwise, like the last race in Imola, and that it climbs and drops a lot and then there’s the famous turn eight that goes on forever.
“I reckon with the modern F1 cars’ level of downforce, it should be really fast now and require plenty of commitment. Then there are some corners that are similar to famous turns at Spa and Interlagos, so I expect it will be an interesting weekend.”
While his team mate Pierre Gasly also lacks real-world experience of the circuit, he has been able to put a few virtual laps in on his own simulator.
“Like most of the drivers I’ve never raced in Istanbul,” said Gasly, “so it will be a case of discovering the track for the first time.
“The layout looks very interesting and so I’m keen to experience it for myself. I have managed to do a few laps of the track in the simulator and it seems really unique with unusual corners – everyone’s heard of turn eight with all the long left-handers.
“The first sector seems interesting with some blind parts. There are also some changes of gradient and a lot of corners where you have high lateral and longitudinal loads when you are turning and braking at the same time. I think it is quite complicated and I like that sort of track with a lot of corners where you have to get into a rhythm and so I think I’ll enjoy it. It’s another opportunity to try and do something really good.”
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2020 F1 season
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- F1 revenues fell by $877 million in Covid-struck 2020 season
- Hamilton and Mercedes finally announce new deal for 2021 season
- F1 audience figures “strong” in 2020 despite dip in television viewers
- 2020 F1 driver rankings #1: Lewis Hamilton