September 4, 2010
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Despite the speculation recently that Karun Chandhok would be unable to drive the new Korean GP track today, due to construction being behind schedule, he managed to drive 15 laps in a Red Bull F1 car. However, he still stated that the track needs more work before it can be ready for Formula 1.
He drove 15 laps in the Red Bull demonstration car, then 10 in a road car today. This is what he said of the track so far:
"It’s a really interesting layout. The track’s got a good mix of
corners and I think we’ll see a lot of overtaking in the first
sector – there are long straights into slow hairpins. The straight
after turn one and two is really long, so we may see some good
slip streaming there, like in Shanghai. From turn seven onwards,
there’s a fast section of flowing corners all the way back to
the start-finish line – so I think the Red Bull Racing guys
will be happy in sectors two and three. It’s an interesting
Looking at the facilities, the garages and team buildings look
pretty much finished and they’re big! I think teams will need
to bring around 30% more furniture to fill them! The grandstands
also look reasonably finished. The track itself needs a bit more
work on the asphalt and the kerbs, but the organisers think it’s
all within their time-lines and are confident that it will be
ready on time. And the locations nice, we’re overlooking the sea.
There’s certainly some enthusiasm for F1 here. There are a lot
of people at the event today, which wasn’t heavily publicised,
and there’s a lot of media, which shows an interest. The
organisers say they have sold a significant amount of tickets,
so it should be a good race. It’s been great to drive the Red
Bull car again and thanks to my team, HRT F1, for letting me
complete this demonstration run."
This is certainly good news, as up to even a few days ago I was certain that the event would not go ahead.
For a different look at the track, here are two spectator videos of the event. Don’t take the fully built grandstand and pit lane as an indicator that it’s all finished though, as the rest of the track is still being constructed: