August 16, 2010
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The Bahrain Grand Prix venue will revert to its old layout for the 2011 races onwards, the organisers announced today. This came after the 2010 race was raced on the new “endurance” layout, which included a new section, but was considered a complete failure by many.
The Bahrain International Circuit, which will revert to its original layout for 2011
The endurance section was initially touted as a chance for overtaking opportunities, according to the circuit organisers, which was clearly going to fail as it as twisty and narrower than the rest of the track. Now that the orignal layout has been revived, the length of the track will fall from 6.299km to 5.412km.
Shaikh Salman Bin Isa Al Khalifa of the Bahrain International Circuit explained the decicion:
"One of the major tasks we undertook to mark this milestone
(60th anniversary of F1, start of 2010) was implementing
changes to our FIA approved track layout, giving the
participating teams of the Bahrain Grand Prix a completely
It was an enormous task given the time frame we had to
implement it, but one that demonstrated Bahrain's
characteristics as a race promoter prepared to continually
ake changes designed to heighten the awareness and
increase the levels of presentation associated with the
sport of Formula 1."
What he means, I think, is that the new endurance circuit was designed as a new challenge, as well as changing the characteristics of the track to benefit overtaking. Since that clearly didn’t work this year, as overtaking was as rare as rain in Bahrain, there really wasn’t much point in retaining the lengthened track.