Driving Guide - Guide for Grand Prix Challenge

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Jamie Stafford/Wolf Feather
[email protected]

Initial Version Completed: March 11, 2003
Version 1.0 Completed:     March 11, 2003


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Spacing and Length
Assumptions and Conventions
Gameplay Modes
AI Levels
Race Order: 2002 Season
Tuning Options
Grand Prix Challenge Mode
General Tips
Driving Tips: Braking
Driving Tips: Cornering
Driving Tips: Rumble Strips
Driving Tips: Concrete Extensions
Driving Tips: Coasting
Driving Tips: Drafting/Slipstreaming
Driving Tips: Wet-weather Racing/Driving
Grand Prix Of Australia: Albert Park
Grand Prix Of Malaysia: Kuala Lampur
Grand Prix Of Brazil: Interlagos
Grand Prix Of San Marino: Imola
Grand Prix Of Spain: Catalunya
Grand Prix Of Austria: A1-Ring
Grand Prix Of Monaco: Monte Carlo (Temporary Street Circuit)
Grand Prix Of Canada: Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve
Grand Prix Of Europe: Nurburgring
Grand Prix Of Great Britain: Silverstone
Grand Prix Of France: Nevers Magny-Cours
Grand Prix Of Germany: Hockenheim
Grand Prix Of Hungary: Hungaroring
Grand Prix Of Belgium: Spa-Francorchamps
Grand Prix Of Italy: Monza
Grand Prix Of The United States: Indianapolis
Grand Prix Of Japan: Suzuka
Circuit Histories
Circuit History: Albert Park
Circuit History: Kuala Lampur
Circuit History: Interlagos
Circuit History: Imola
Circuit History: Catalunya
Circuit History: A1-Ring
Circuit History: Monte Carlo
Circuit History: Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve
Circuit History: Nurburgring
Circuit History: Silverstone
Circuit History: Nevers Magny-Cours
Circuit History: Hockenheim
Circuit History: Hungaroring
Circuit History: Spa-Francorchamps
Circuit History: Monza
Circuit History: Indianapolis
Circuit History: Suzuka
Contact Information


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Grand Prix Challenge is the latest F1-based game to come to
the North American market, and it is definitely one of the
best the PlayStation2 has seen to date.  EA Sports has
dominated F1-based PS2 games in North America, but with its
great F1 franchise coming to an end, Atari has come up to the
starting grid with Grand Prix Challenge, which is both
friendlier to the newcomer to F1 racing games and adaptable
enough to accommodate a nice array of F1 gaming experience.

This is not to say that this is the 'next' V-Rally 3, Atari's
take on rally racing.  V-Rally 3 is certainly excellent in
its own right, but Grand Prix Challenge is not quite up to
the level of V-Rally 3.  Nonetheless, even casual F1 gamers
should find a healthy mixture of fun and challenge in playing
Grand Prix Challenge.

Please note that some of the information in this guide comes
from my F1 2002: Driving Guide, General Racing/Driving Guide,
and Pro Race Driver: Circuit Histories Guide.


Most race circuits outside the United States name most
corners and chicanes, and even some straightaways.  Where
these names are known, they will be referenced in the Notes
section of each circuit's suggested set-up.  These names have
been gathered from course maps available on the courses'
official Web sites, my memory of how F1 races have been
called by American TV sportscasters (Fox Sports Net and
SpeedVision, in 1999-2001, and Speed Channel in 2002), and/or
from the Training Mode of F1 Championship Season 2000
(corner/segment names are listed at the bottom of the
screen).  To the extent possible, these names have been
translated into English.


There are six gameplay modes available in Grand Prix
Challenge.  Each has its own 'quirks,' whereas some features
are common to most if not all of these gameplay modes.

Quick Race
   Here, the player can participate in a single race, but the
   player will automatically begin the race in last position.
   Beforehand, the player can select a race venue, AI and
   handling difficulty, a team, and a driver.  In Quick Race
   Mode, car tuning is not permitted, which could give the
   player a severe handicap compared to the rest of the
   cars in a race depending upon the car/team and the circuit
Grand Prix
   This is a full grand prix weekend, from practice to
   qualifying to warm-up to the race itself.  Beforehand, the
   player can select a race venue, AI and handling
   difficulty, a team, and a driver.
   This is the entire 2002 F1 season in order; essentially,
   this is a set of seventeen consecutive Grand Prix Mode
Time Trial
   This gameplay mode is useful for learning a circuit and
   for testing vehicle set-ups by racing against the clock
   with no other vehicles on the selected circuit.  The
   player can select the number of laps permitted; the more
   laps a player chooses to use (up to Unlimited), the longer
   the player can stay on the circuit trying to score lower
   and lower lap times, allowing for the player to see how
   the chosen team's car will handle on long runs during a
   race as the fuel is depleted, the tires become worn, etc.
Grand Prix Challenge
   This gameplay mode presents ten challenges; each
   challenge must be successfully completed (by having the
   most points at the end of the challenge) in order to
   unlock the next challenge.  See the Grand Prix Challenge
   section below for more specific information on each of the
   ten challenges in this gameplay mode.
   Here, two players can race simultaneously with split
   screen action.  All circuits are available, and the
   players can choose to work through an entire grand prix
   weekend (practice, qualifying, warm-up, and race).

Common to multiple gameplay modes are the following:
   1.) The length of the qualifying session depends on the
       chosen AI difficulty level.  Only on Hard does the
       player have the actual sixty minutes for qualifying as
       allotted in real-world F1 racing in the 2002 season.
   2.) If a player chooses to qualify for a better starting
       position in a race, the player can still opt for a
       different tire compound just before the race itself.
       This is counter to the real-world F1 rules in 2002,
       under which a car can only use the same tire compound
       in a race which was also used in qualifying.
   3.) There is a TV helicopter at each race.  Its cameras
       are trained upon the car in the lead.  Therefore, a
       player deep in the pack can still have some idea of
       the distance between the player and the leader by
       looking ahead for the TV helicopter.
   4.) Quick Race Mode and Grand Prix Mode both begin with
       only the first six events of the 2002 season (at
       Albert Park, Kuala Lampur, Interlagos, Imola,
       Catalunya, and A1-Ring) initially available; all other
       circuits in these gameplay modes are initially locked.
       To unlock the other eleven circuits in these gameplay
       modes, the player must win races at any of the first
       six event venues in either Quick Race Mode or Grand
       Prix Mode.  There is no need to proceed through the
       initially-available circuits in order, although
       diehard F1 purists may choose to do this since the
       circuits are presented in the same order used in the
       real-world 2002 F1 season.


Grand Prix Challenge presents FOUR levels of opponent AI.
The back of the game's case announces that four levels are
available, but only three levels are initially available; the
fourth level is an unlockable feature.

The fourth and final level of AI is called 'Ace AI,' and is
unlocked by winning Championship Mode. I did Championship
Mode on 3 laps with Medium Handling and Easy AI, just to
sweep through it once to see what it was like, and thus had
170 points (the maximum) at the end of the season. I do not
know if the 170 points is a requirement to unlock Ace AI.


F1 2002 presents the courses in the order in which they were
presented for the 2002 Formula 1 season.  This driving guide
will follow the same convention.

F1 Race Schedule, 2002 Season:
   March 3        Australia       Albert Park
   March 17       Malaysia        Sepang
   March 31       Brazil          Interlagos
   April 14       San Marino      Imola
   April 28       Spain           Catalunya
   May 12         Austria         A1-Ring
   May 26         Monaco          Unnamed (Street Circuit)
   June 9         Canada          Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve
   June 23        Europe          Nurburgring
   July 7         Great Britain   Silverstone
   July 21        France          Nevers Magny-Cours
   July 28        Germany         Hockenheim
   August 18      Hungary         Hungaroring
   September 1    Belgium         Spa-Francorchamps
   September 15   Italy           Monza
   September 29   USA             Indianapolis
   October 13     Japan           Suzuka


In many gameplay modes, the player can tune the selected car
to maximize its performance at each circuit.  Unfortunately,
there is no provision in Grand Prix Challenge to save tuning
options for each car/circuit combination, so tuning will need
to be done every time the player changes circuits and/or

   There are four tire compounds available in Grand Prix
      Hard:         These tires have the longest life,
                    which means that the player can remain on
                    the circuit longer between pit stops.
                    However, hard tires have rather little
                    pavement grip, so the player can expect
                    the car to slide around a bit when
                    cornering.  Hard tires also provide a
                    minor increase in top-end speed.  Hard
                    tires should ONLY be used in dry racing
      Soft:         Soft tires have superb pavement grip,
                    which moderately lowers top-end speed.
                    Unfortunately, soft tires also have
                    relatively short a lifespan, thus
                    requiring more trips to pit lane during
                    a race.  Soft tires should ONLY be used
                    in dry racing conditions.
      Wet:          If racing in the rain, these are the
                    tires to use.  The vehicle's overall
                    speed and handling will still be poorer
                    than if using hard tires or soft tires in
                    dry racing conditions, but the car will
                    be better able to stay on the circuit in
                    wet conditions when using wet tires.
      Intermediate: These tires are best for the 'in-between'
                    period, when rain first begins to fall
                    or as the circuit is drying after the
                    rain.  The trick to using intermediate
                    tires is correctly guessing just how long
                    the 'in-between' period will last, and
                    judging whether it is best to waste the
                    time with two trips to pit lane (to
                    change both to and from the intermediate
                    tires) or to only come to pit lane once -
                    the latter occurring hopefully within a
                    scheduled pit window.
   Downforce is what keeps these lightweight speed machines
   on the ground, and the amount of downforce directly
   affects vehicle handling.  Using high downforce will lower
   the vehicle's top-end speed, but cornering will be easier.
   Conversely, lowering downforce will increase top-end speed
   at the sacrifice of cornering ability.
Gear Box Ratio
   Lower gear ratios are best for fast and strong
   acceleration, but will reduce a vehicle's top-end speed.
   On the other hand, higher gear ratios raise the top-end
   speed at the sacrifice of acceleration.
   A softer suspension setting provides more pavement grip,
   but will reduce the car's overall speed.  A harder
   suspension setting provides faster top-end speed but less
   pavement grip.  Soft suspension is best for bumpy
   circuits or for driving styles which make heavy usage of
   the many rumble strips, whereas hard suspension is best
   for relatively smooth circuits and those driving styles
   which generally avoid the rumble strips.
Brake Balance
   The brake balance can be moved closer to the front or the
   rear of the vehicle.  Strong rear bias can cause oversteer
   and strong front bias can cause understeer; however, all
   braking should be done in a straight line as much as
   possible to minimize the occurrence of oversteer and
Traction Control System (TCS)
   Traction control was re-implemented in the 2002 F1 season,
   beginning with the Spanish Grand Prix (held at Catalunya).
   This system reduces the chances of the vehicle sliding
   during acceleration, and is of particular importance for
   the standing start of a race and for recovering when the
   vehicle has left the pavement.
      In Beginner handling, TCS is always set to high.  In
   Intermediate handling, TCS can be toggled between low and
   high.  In Expert handling, TCS can be set to off, low, or
      In Intermediate handling and Expert handling, TCS
   settings can be changed during any session or race,
   meaning that a player can experiment with various traction
   control settings for each corner or area of a circuit and
   make a mental note to always have the TCS at a particular
   setting in various parts of a lap for every lap of a race.
      Generally speaking, traction control works quite well
   for accelerating out of tight, slow corners, especially
   when running through consecutive tight, slow corners.
   Monaco is perhaps the best example in current F1 racing of
   a circuit where a high TCS setting is highly favorable.
   High-speed circuits, such as Monza or Catalunya, are
   generally best served by using either a low traction
   control setting or NO traction control at all, as this
   will provide a little more speed on the many lengthy
Anti-lock Braking System (ABS)
   ABS theoretically prevents wheel-lock during severe
   braking.  In Expert handling, ABS can be set to on or off.
   Unlike traction control, ABS cannot be toggled on and off
   during a race.
   In Expert handling, the transmission can be set to
   Automatic or Manual.


This gameplay mode presents ten challenges; each challenge
must be successfully completed (by having the most points at
the end of the challenge) in order to unlock the next
challenge.  As in other gameplay modes, the player is able to
begin by choosing a team and driver.

There are ten challenges total, each with its own specific
circuits and 'constraints.'  The 'constraints' listed are the
official settings for each challenge.  However, if the
Weather setting appears with an asterisk (*), this means that
the weather conditions are actually variable within the

In the Hand./AI (Handling and Opponent AI) column, E stands
for Easy, M for Medium, and H for Hard.  As a player
progresses through Grand Prix Challenge Mode, the available
handling modes become fewer and fewer, thus making the races
more and more difficult.  Similarly, the AI options follow
the handling options in Grand Prix Challenge Mode.

Challenge        Circuits            'Constraints'   Hand./AI
--------------   -----------------   -------------   --------
Passion Rosa     Monza               5 laps          EMH
                 Imola               Weather dry
                                     Fuel use off
                                     Damage off
                                     Tire wear off
Asia-Pacific     Sepang              5 laps          EMH
                 Suzuka              Weather dry
                                     Fuel use off
                                     Damage off
                                     Tire wear off
Deutsche         Nurburgring         10 laps         EMH
                 Hockenheim          Weather dry
                                     Fuel use on
                                     Damage off
                                     Tire wear on
Americas         Gilles-Villeneuve   10 laps         MH
                 Indianapolis        Weather dry
                 Interlagos          Fuel use on
                                     Damage off
                                     Tire wear on
Street Circuit   Albert Park         10 laps         MH
                 Monaco              Weather dry
                 Gilles-Villeneuve   Fuel use on
                                     Damage off
                                     Tire wear on
Western Europe   Silverstone         10 laps         MH
                 Magny-Cours         Weather wet*
                 Spa-Francorchamps   Fuel use on
                                     Damage on
                                     Tire wear on
Blue Skies       Albert Park         15 laps         H
                 Gilles-Villeneuve   Weather dry
                 Catalunya           Fuel use on
                 Magny-Cours         Damage on
                                     Tire wear on
Mediterranean    Monaco              15 laps         H
                 Catalunya           Weather wet
                 Monza               Fuel use on
                 Imola               Damage on
                                     Tire wear on
Grey Skies       Sepang              15 laps         H
                 Silverstone         Weather wet
                 Spa-Francorchamps   Fuel use on
                 Suzuka              Damage on
                                     Tire wear on
Central Europe   Nurburgring         20 laps         H
                 Hockenheim          Weather wet
                 A1-Ring             Fuel use on
                 Hungaroring         Damage on
                                     Tire wear on


A general tip for ALL racing games is to successfully
complete ALL the license tests in any game of the Gran
Turismo series.  This is a great way to learn how to handle
cars of all drivetrain formats and horsepower ratings in a
wide variety of situations - starting and stopping, J-turns,
right-angle corners, chicanes, blind turns, wet racing
conditions, etc.  This will all be very handy for virtually
ANY racing/driving game you ever play,  and the Gran Turismo
games are also extremely good to have in your PSX/PS2
collection (especially GT3).

Another general tip for ALL racing games is to read through
my General Racing/Driving Guide, available EXCLUSIVELY at
FeatherGuides (http://feathersites.angelcities.com/) and at
GameFAQs (http://www.GameFAQs.com).  This presents many of
the same information the Gran Turismo license tests present
in practice, plus plenty of other information ranging from
judicious use of rumble strips to typical tuning options to
tire management.

During pit stops, the player is given the choice to change to
a different tire compound, but there is also the Don't Change
option available.  'Don't Change' DOES NOT mean 'do not
change the tire compound;' instead, it means 'do not change
the current tires.'  This is VERY important to keep in mind
in order to avoid any surprises later in the race.

F1's standing starts can either give you a great advantage,
or put you at the back of the pack.  To reduce or eliminate
wheelspin from a standing start, try to time the use of the
accelerator with the exact millisecond the lights go out.  If
you use the accelerator too soon, you WILL have wheelspin,
which can cause flat-spotting in the rear tires and can even
cause your car to go askew so that it points in a trajectory
taking you directly OFF the circuit (or into a barrier).

Also related to the standing starts, if you are deep in the
pack, the car directly in front of you is likely to produce A
LOT of smoke (and spray, if in wet conditions at the
beginning of a race) due to wheelspin.  If at all possible,
swing to the edge of the pavement immediately to avoid an
early accident if you can get off the line a lot sooner than
the car in front.  Some circuits are set up so that there is
either wide pavement on the Pit Straight or an expanse of
pavement unofficially part of the main circuit itself (such
as the right side of the pavement at Monza and at Suzuka);
making use of these areas can allow you to swing out wide to
avoid incidents, and also get you clear of traffic so that
you can REALLY slam on the accelerator and pass huge numbers
of cars before the initial corners of the circuit.

Braking is always important in racing.  However, Grand Prix
Challenge demands SMOOTH braking (especially if using
Simulation handling), which often means braking rather early.
Slamming on the brakes often results in wheel lock and/or car
spin, which can induce flat-spotting on the tires and
tremendously increases the risk of collision - especially
with the Tire Wear option activated.

Even after the standing starts, the use of the accelerator is
extremely important in Grand Prix Challenge.  By exercising
extreme care with both the brakes and the accelerator, anyone
can rapidly learn to essentially glide through corners at a
rather quick speed.  A pristine racing line is also important
in these situations, as the changes in G-force and velocity
need to be constantly kept in check if you want to remain on
the official course.

I personally find it sometimes easier to take tight corners
WITHOUT braking.  In these cases, simply let off the
accelerator and coast toward and through the corner until the
appropriate acceleration point, usually at or just beyond the
apex.  One very good place to attempt this strategy is at the
initial corners at Sepang (Malaysia), although this tactic
can have rather dire consequences at the start of a race with
all the cars bunched together.

Some circuits have distance-to-corner markers in anticipation
of tight and/or (semi-)blind corners.  While these markers
are useful, DO NOT completely rely on them, as they may
'disappear' as the race progresses.  These markers can be
knocked down by a car which slips or is forced off the
pavement, and the markers are not replaced.  Therefore, try
to use permanent objects (such as grandstands or trees) to
judge the braking zone for a corner or chicane.


F1 racing has a somewhat specialized vocabulary.  Here are
some of the more common terms:

ARMCO:                   The type of barriers generally used
                         at F1 races.  Information on these
                         crash barriers can be found at Hill
                         and Smith Web site
Blowed up:               A car's engine has expired.  This is
                         characterized by a massive plume of
                         white-grey smoke pouring from the
                         rear of the car.  Also, there is
                         often oil deposited all over the
                         race circuit, so if a blowed up
                         car does not instantly pull off the
                         pavement, that section of the
                         circuit will be very dangerous for
                         the remainder of the race.
Catch:                   In any form of auto racing, it is
                         quite common to see a car slide off
                         the course, often at high speeds.
                         Generally, this results in a car
                         either being essentially beached in
                         a sand trap, stuck in the grass if
                         the area has recently experienced a
                         significant rainfall, or a collision
                         a barrier.  Even if the car does not
                         slide off the course, spins on the
                         racing circuit itself also occur
                         with relative frequency.
                            A 'catch' is when one of the
                         above incidents occurs, but the
                         driver is able to either keep the
                         car from hitting a barrier (or
                         another car) and/or is able to keep
                         the car from getting stuck in the
                         sand or grass before returning to
                         the circuit.
Lollipop Man:            The man holding the Brakes stick in
                         a Pit Stop.  This stick essentially
                         looks like a long lollipop, with its
                         long handle and rounded end with
                         instructions for the driver.
Off:                     A car has gone off-course.  A minor
                         off means that only one or perhaps
                         two wheels have slipped off the
                         pavement, and the driver can
                         generally recover quickly.  However,
                         a major off involves a trip well
                         off the pavement, and usually also
                         occurs at very high speed.
P#:                      This indicates a driver's race
                         position.  P1 is Pole Position; P6
                         is the final points-paying position;
                         P22 is last place.
Points-paying Positions: These are the Top 6 places in a
                         race.  At the end of a race, P1
                         awards 10 points, P2 awards 6
                         points, P3 awards 4 points, P4
                         awards 3 points, P5 awards 2 points,
                         and P1 awards 1 point.  There are NO
                         points awarded to drivers not
                         finishing in the Top 6.  This also
                         the reason why the TV Panels at the
                         bottom of the screen update by six
                         positions at once.
Shunt:                   A collision, generally between cars.
                         This term could also be used for
                         cars swapping paint, but that is
                         EXTREMELY difficult to do in open-
                         wheel racing (such as F1) without
                         inducing an accident.
Team Orders:             Each F1 team runs two cars at each
                         race weekend.  Team orders involve
                         one or both drivers purposely
                         altering driving style or changing
                         race positions for the betterment of
                         the team.  While team orders are NOT
                         illegal in F1 competition (in 2002;
                         team orders are illegal in some
                         other forms of motorsport), many
                         generally have a strong dislike (and
                         even a nasty hatred) for team
                         orders, especially in those
                         situations where team orders
                         actually change the results of a
                            The most notable incidence of
                         team orders - and likely the most
                         controversial use of team orders in
                         F1 history past, present, or future
                         - involved Ferrari's Reubens
                         Barrichello, who had dominated the
                         entire race weekend, pulling over in
                         the final meters of the 2002 Grand
                         Prix of Austria (at A1-Ring) so that
                         his teammate Michael Schumacher
                         could instead take the win, thus
                         gaining an extra four points over
                         his strong rival Juan Pablo Montoya
                         in the Drivers' Championship.  This
                         use of team orders severely angered
                         F1 fans at the circuit and around
                         the world, but was justified by
                         Ferrari by the team's desire to
                         protect Schumacher's lead in the
                         Drivers' Championship.
World Feed:              Because F1 races are televised
                         (generally live) worldwide, FIA has
                         implemented the World Feed system,
                         in which the images of grand prix
                         weekends are provided by the FIA-
                         licensed F1 broadcaster for the
                         country hosting each grand prix; all
                         other F1 broadcasters must then use
                         these images and sounds for their
                         F1 coverage.  There are provisions
                         for the many F1-licensed
                         broadcasters worldwide to include
                         Pit Lane reports, but once a race
                         begins, FIA prohibits any images
                         from Pit Lane which are NOT provided
                         by the World Feed system.
                            Since each race is essentially
                         'televised' by a different country's
                         F1-licensed broadcaster, the World
                         Feed coverage between races
                         definitely varies in quality.  The
                         World Feed for races in Malaysia is
                         generally rather poor, with images
                         often focusing on action away from
                         what is most significant for the
                         race or the overall season
                         standings, reflecting Malaysia's
                         F1-licensed broadcaster's lack of
                         experience and knowledge in
                         televising live F1 races.  Races
                         held in Western Europe - where most
                         F1 races are held - generally have a
                         very high quality World Feed due to
                         extensive experience and knowledge
                         in televising F1 races.
                            However, each country's licensed
                         broadcaster has the option of having
                         its own commentary team at each
                         event, so that the World Feed images
                         are overlayed with commentators
                         recognized in each country and in
                         that country's language(s).  There
                         are still a number of countries or
                         regions of the world which tend to
                         use the standard British F1
                         broadcasts; Murray Walker was the
                         primary commentator for these
                         broadcasts until his recent


The first step in driving fast is knowing when, where, and
how much to slow down (braking).  In some games, a brake
controller can be acquired or purchased, allowing the player
to customize the brake strength by axle or by adjusting the
bias of the brakes toward the front or the rear of the car.

The use of a brake controller will affect the braking zone,
as will other factors.  Specifically, the car's speed on
approaching a corner, the amount of fuel in the car at a
given moment, the drivetrain of the car, the weight of the
car, and even the car's center of gravity can all affect the
braking zone.  Similarly, the driving conditions - sunny,
overcast, damp, wet, icy, snowy etc. - will affect the
braking zone for each corner (as well as the car's ability to
attain high speeds).

Except for purely arcade-style games, the braking zone will
differ somewhat for each car depending upon its strengths and
weaknesses.  It certainly helps for the player to try a Free
Run or a Time Trial (if these modes exist in a given game) to
learn the circuit(s) - including the braking zones.

When looking for braking zones, try to find a particular
stationary object near the entry of each corner; it helps
tremendously if this object is far enough away from the
circuit that it will not be knocked over during a race.  To
begin, try using the brakes when the front of the car is
parallel with the chosen stationary object.  If this does not
slow the car enough before corner entry or if the car slows
too much before reaching the corner, pick another stationary
object on the following lap and try again.

Whenever changes are made to the car - whether to the brake
controller or to other aspects of tuning and/or parts - it
would be a good idea to go back into Free Run mode and check
that the braking zones still hold; if not, adjust as
necessary using the method in the paragraph above.

For those races which include fuel loads, the car will become
progressively lighter during a race.  The lesser weight can
often mean a slightly shorter braking zone; however, if tire
wear is excessive (especially if there have been numerous
off-course excursions), that might dictate a longer braking

Cars with a higher horsepower output will inherently attain
faster speeds, and will therefore require a longer braking
zone than cars with a lower horsepower output.  Try a
Volkswagon New Beetle, a Mini Cooper, a Dodge Viper, a Panoz
Esperante GT-1, a Corvette C5R, and an F-2002 (all in
stock/base configuration) along the same area of a circuit
and note how their braking zones differ.

A final note on braking: To the extent possible, ALWAYS brake
in a straight line.  If braking only occurs when cornering,
the car will likely be carrying too much speed for the
corner, resulting in the car sliding, spinning, and/or
flipping.  (Some games purposely do not permit the car to
flip, but a slide or spin can still mean the difference
between winning and ending up in last position at the end of
a race.)

If nothing else, players should strive to become of the
'breakers' they possibly can.  This will essentially force a
player to become a better racer/driver in general once the
player has overcome the urge to constantly run at top speed
at all times with no regard for damages to self or others.
Also, slowing the car appropriately will make other aspects
of racing/driving easier, especially in J-turns, hairpin
corners, and chicanes.


Ideally, the best way to approach a corner is from the
outside of the turn, braking well before entering the corner.
At the apex (the midpoint of the corner), the car should be
right up against the edge of the pavement.  On corner exit,
the car drifts back to the outside of the pavement and speeds
off down the straightaway.  So, for a right-hand turn of
about ninety degrees, enter the corner from the left, come to
the right to hit the apex, and drift back to the left on
corner exit.  See the Diagrams section at the end of this
guide for a sample standard corner.

For corners that are less than ninety degrees, it may be
possible to just barely tap the brakes - if at all - and be
able to clear such corners successfully.  However, the same
principles of cornering apply: approach from the outside of
the turn, hit the apex, and drift back outside on corner

For corners more than ninety degrees but well less than 180
degrees, braking will certainly be required.  However, for
these 'J-turns,' the apex of the corner is not the midpoint,
but a point approximately two-thirds of the way around the
corner.  J-turns require great familiarity to know when to
begin diving toward the inside of the corner and when to
power to the outside on corner exit.  See the Diagrams
section at the end of this guide for a sample J-turn.

Hairpin corners are turns of approximately 180 degrees.
Braking is certainly required before corner entry, and the
cornering process is the same as for standard corners:
Approach from the outside, drift inside to hit the apex
(located at halfway around the corner, or after turning
ninety degrees), and drifting back to the outside on corner
exit.  See the Diagrams section at the end of this guide for
a sample hairpin corner.

If there are two corners of approximately ninety degrees each
AND both corners turn in the same direction AND there is only
a VERY brief straightaway between the two corners, they may
be able to be treated like an extended hairpin corner.
Sometimes, however, these 'U-turns' have a straightaway
between the corners that is just long enough to prohibit a
hairpin-like treatment; in this case, drifting to the outside
on exiting the first of the two corners will automatically
set up the approach to the next turn.  See the Diagrams
section at the end of this guide for a sample U-turn.

FIA (the governing body of F1 racing, World Rally
Championship, and other forms of international motorsport)
seems to love chicanes.  One common type of chicane is
essentially a 'quick-flick,' where the circuit quickly edges
off in one direction then realigns itself in a path parallel
to the original stretch of pavement, as in the examples in
the Diagrams section at the end of this guide.  Here, the
object is to approach the first corner from the outside, hit
BOTH apexes, and drift to the outside of the second turn.

FIA also seems to like the 'Bus Stop' chicane, which is
essentially just a pair of quick-flicks, with the second
forming the mirror image of the first, as shown in the
Diagrams section at the end of this guide.  Perhaps the most
famous Bus Stop chicane is the chicane (which is actually
called the 'Bus Stop Chicane') at Pit Entry at Spa-
Francorchamps, the home of the annual Grand Prix of Belgium
(F1 racing) and the host of The 24 Hours of Spa (for
endurance racing).

Virtually every other type of corner or corner combination
encountered in racing (primarily in road racing) combines
elements of the corners presented above.  These complex
corners and chicanes can be challenging, such as the Ascari
chicane at Monza.  See the Diagrams section for an idea of
the formation of Ascari.

However, in illegal street/highway racing, the positioning of
traffic can 'create' the various corners and corner
combinations mentioned here.  For example, weaving in and out
of traffic creates a virtual bus stop chicane (see the
Diagrams section at the end of this guide).  Slowing may be
necessary - it often is - depending on the distance between
the vehicles.  See the Sample Circuit Using Some of the Above
Corner Types Combines in the Diagrams section at the end of
this guide; note that this is a diagram for a very technical

At some race venues, 'artificial chicanes' may be created by
placing cones and/or (concrete) barriers in the middle of a
straightaway.  One such game which used this type of chicane
is the original Formula1 by Psygnosis, an F1-based
PlayStation game from 1995, which used this at Circuit
Gilles-Villeneuve along Casino Straight (shortly after
passing the final grandstands at the exit of Casino Hairpin).

One thing which can change the approach to cornering is the
available vision.  Blind and semi-blind corners require
ABSOLUTE knowledge of such corners.  Here is where gamers
have an advantage over real-world drivers:  Gamers can
(usually) change their viewpoint (camera position), which can
sometimes provide a wider, clearer view of the circuit, which
can be especially important when approaching semi-blind
corners; real-world drivers are obviously inhibited by the
design of their cars and racing helmets.  Great examples of
real-world blind and semi-blind corners would be Mulsanne
Hump at Le Mans, Turns 14 and 15 at Albert Park, and each of
the first three corners at A1-Ring.

Also important to cornering - especially with long, extended
corners - is the corner's radius.  Most corners use an
identical radius throughout their length.  However, some are
increasing-radius corners or decreasing-radius corners.
These corners may require shifting the apex point of a
corner, and almost always result in a change of speed.
Decreasing-radius corners are perhaps the trickiest, because
the angle of the corner becomes sharper, thus generally
requiring more braking as well as more turning of the
steering wheel.  Increasing-radius corners are corners for
which the angle becomes more and more gentle as the corner
progresses; this means that drivers will generally accelerate
more, harder, or faster, but such an extra burst of speed can
backfire and require more braking.  See the Diagrams section
at the end of this guide for sample images of a decreasing-
radius corner and an increasing-radius corner.

For traditional road racing circuits, increasing-radius and
decreasing-radius corners may not be too much of a problem;
after several laps around one of these circuits, a driver
will know where the braking and acceleration points are as
well as the shifted apex point (should a shift be required).
However, for stage-based rally racing, where the roads are
virtually unknown and the driver knows what is ahead only
because of the navigator's instructions (which - based upon
notes - may or may not be absolutely correct), the unknown
can cause drivers to brake more often and/or more heavily.
For rally-based games, such as the Need for Speed: V-Rally
series (PlayStation/PSOne/PlayStation2) or for World Rally
Championship (PlayStation2), there is often specialized
vocabulary used: 'tightens' generally designates that a
corner has a decreasing radius, whereas 'widens' or 'opens'
indicates that a corner has an increasing radius.  This need
for 'extra' braking is also tempered by the fact that in much
of rally racing, corners are either blind or semi-blind, due
to trees, buildings, cliffs, embankments, and other obstacles
to clear vision all the way around a corner.

One particularly interesting aspect of cornering is one which
I honestly do not know if it works in reality (I am not a
real-world racer, although I would certainly LOVE the chance
to attend a racing school!!!), but which works in numerous
racing/driving games I have played over the years.  This
aspect is to use the accelerator to help with quickly and
safely navigating sharp corners.  This works by first BRAKING
AS USUAL IN ADVANCE OF THE CORNER, then - once in the corner
itself - rapidly pumping the brakes for the duration of the
corner (or at least until well past the apex of the corner).
The action of rapidly pumping the accelerator appears to
cause the drive wheels to catch the pavement just enough to
help stop or slow a sliding car, causing the non-drive wheels
to continue slipping and the entire car to turn just a little
faster.  Using this rapid-pumping technique with the
accelerator does take a little practice initially, and seems
to work best with FR cars; however, once perfected, this
technique can pay dividends, especially with REALLY sharp
hairpin corners, such as at Sebring International Raceway or
those often found in rally racing.


Depending on car set-up and weather conditions, rumble strips
(sometimes also called 'alligators') can be either useful or
dangerous.  The purpose of rumble strips is to provide a few
extra centimeters of semi-racing surface to help keep cars
from dropping wheels off the pavement, which can slow cars
and throw grass and other debris onto the racing surface
(which makes racing a little more dangerous for all involved,
especially in corners).  Generally, rumble strips are found
on the outside of a corner at corner entry and corner exit,
and also at the apex of a corner - these locations provide a
slightly better racing line overall.

If a car is set with a very stiff suspension (i.e., there is
not much room for the suspension to move as the car passes
over bumps and other irregularities in the racing surface),
hitting rumble strips can cause the car to jump.  Even if
airborne for only a few milliseconds, at speed, it could be
just enough so that the driver loses control of the car.
Obviously, if one or more wheels are not in contact with the
ground, the car is losing speed, which could be just enough
of a mistake for other cars to pass by, and the lack of
contact with the ground could result in excessive wheelspin
which risks to flat-spot the tire(s) when contact is regained
with the ground.

When the racetrack is damp or wet, however, it is generally
best to avoid using the rumble strips.  Since rumble strips
are painted (usually red and white), ANY amount of moisture
will make the rumble strips extremely slick as the water
beads on the paint, so that hitting a rumble strip in the
process of cornering (especially at the apex of a corner)
will cause the tire(s) to lose traction and often send the
car spinning.


Similar to rumble strips are concrete extensions.  These are
generally (much) wider than rumble strips, and may or may not
be painted (at FIA-approved F1 circuits, for example, these
are generally painted green).  Also, whereas rumble strips
protrude slightly above the level of the racing surface,
concrete extensions are at the same level as the racing

Concrete extensions can be used in the same manner as rumble
strips.  However, if painted, concrete extensions should be
avoided for the same reasons listed above for rumble strips n
the event of wet or damp racing conditions.

Players should note that in some games - especially where
challenges or license tests are involved - concrete
extensions are often NOT designated as part of the official
track, resulting in an 'Out of Bounds' designation.  This is
true, for example, in EA Sports' F1-based series (F1 2000, F1
Championship Season 2000, F1 2001, and F1 2002) and in the
Gran Turismo series.


Some players may believe that a good racer is ALWAYS either
accelerating or braking.  However, this is not always the
best way to approach a given section of a circuit or rally
stage.  Coasting can sometimes be beneficial.

First, consider standard street or highway driving.  Street-
legal cars are designed for the same foot to be used for both
acceleration and braking (with the other foot used for
operating the clutch if the vehicle uses a manual
transmission).  There is always a slight delay between
acceleration and braking as the driver moves the foot from
one pedal to the other; during this time, the vehicle is
essentially coasting - that is, the vehicle's current
momentum is the only thing moving the vehicle.

In real-world racing, there are a number of drivers who use
'left-foot braking.'  In other words, one foot is used for
the accelerator, while the other foot is used for the brake
pedal.  Yet even in left-foot braking, a driver must take
care to NOT be pressing both the accelerator pedal AND the
brake pedal simultaneously, as this could cause the engine
revs to spike and/or cause undue tire wear.  Therefore, even
though for a much shorter duration (perhaps best measured in
hundredths of a second) than in standard 'right-foot
braking,' there is always a short period of coasting.

In many racing games, I find that coasting through tight
corners (including tight chicanes) can sometimes be the best
method to safely navigate these difficult sections - and this
is true in both pavement-based games and in rally-based
games.  Certainly, braking properly (i.e., in a straight line
BEFORE reaching the corner or chicane) is key to successfully
coasting.  However, using NEITHER the accelerator button NOR
the brake button will cause the vehicle to coast, thus using
the natural momentum of the vehicle to perhaps swing the
vehicle around the corner or through the chicane.

This is actually somewhat tricky to explain in words, and is
really something that each player should try several times
(especially on tight, technical circuits, such as Monaco and
Bathurst, or virtually any stage of a rally-based game) to
truly understand this technique.  Once learned, however,
players may easily find themselves adding this technique to
their gaming repertoire :-)


One very useful racing technique is drafting, also known as
slipstreaming.  In some forms of motorsport, especially in
oval track racing such as NASCAR and IRL, drafting is
essential to making passes; NASCAR even raises drafting to an
art form at its restrictor plate races by forcing cars to
draft off each other simply to stay in contact with the

Drafting works because of the aerodynamic vacuum which occurs
behind a vehicle moving at a high rate of speed.  As air
flows around Car A, there is an area around which the air is
forced as it flows off Car A's rear end.  If Car B can get
close enough to Car A, its front end can get into this vacuum
area.  Since vacuums prefer to fill their void with anything
possible, Car B is drawn closer and closer to Car A.  If the
driver of Car B does not do anything or does not react fast
enough, then Car B will eventually crash in to the back of
Car A.  However, once sufficient vacuum-assisted momentum has
been gained, Car B can pull out to the side, exiting the
vacuum with added momentum/speed, and rocket past Car A.

By using Car A's natural high-speed vacuum in this manner,
Car B will emerge from the draft with a major advantage in
terms of speed without ever pressing harder on the
accelerator.  Often, drafting results in an additional
5MPH/8KPH over Car A; while this may not seem like a lot of
extra speed, it is often enough to make a successful pass.

Drafting is a great tactic for oval and tri-oval courses.
However, its effectiveness at road racing venues is
essentially limited to just long straightaways.  In this
case, it is highly important that Car B safely make the
drafting pass well before the braking zone for the next
corner, as the added speed will require earlier and/or
stronger braking.  Also, cars with variable downforce -
especially cars with wings, such as CART and F1 cars - seem
better able to make use of the draft.

Specific to F1 2002, there is a draft/slipstream meter on the
right side of the screen during races and other events (such
as challenges) in the game.  This can be useful, with the
meter lighting up from bottom to top as Car B approaches the
rear end of Car A.  When the meter is fully lit, the player
should quickly pull out of the draft/slipstream or risk an


Almost everything written to this point in the guide focuses
solely upon dry-weather racing/driving conditions.  In fact,
most racing/driving games deal ONLY with dry-weather
conditions.  However, simulation-based games will include at
least a few wet-conditions situations.  This can range from
Gran Turismo 3 - which uses two circuits (hosting a total of
eight races between Simulation Mode and Arcade Mode) where
the roadway has A LOT of standing water, as if the races take
place just following a major prolonged downpour - to F1 2002
- where in most situations, players can purposely select the
desired weather conditions for a given race.

In wet-weather racing/driving conditions, it is IMPERATIVE to
use tires designed for wet-conditions usage.  For example, in
F1 2002, in a full 53-lap race at Monza, I purposely tried
running as long as I could with Dry Tires, then switched to
Rain Tires when I could no longer handle the car's inherent
sliding about... and my lap times instantly dropped by more
than five seconds.

In games which offer Intermediate Tires, such as Le Mans 24
Hours, the period when the racing circuit is simply damp (at
the start of a period of rain, or when the circuit is drying
after a period of rain) can be tricky in terms of tires.
Intermediate Tires are certainly best for these racing
conditions, but the time in Pit Lane spent changing to
Intermediate Tires can mean losing numerous race positions,
especially if the weather conditions change again a short
time later and require another trip to Pit Lane to change
tires yet again.

Tires aside, simulation-style games simply will not allow a
player to drive a circuit the same way in wet-weather
conditions as in dry-weather conditions.  The braking zone
for all but the gentlest of corners will need to be extended,
or else the car risks to hydroplane itself off the pavement.

Throttle management is also key in wet-conditions racing.
Due to the water (and perhaps even puddles) on the circuit,
there is inherently less tire grip, so strong acceleration is
more likely to cause undue wheelspin - which could in turn
spin the car and create a collision.  If a car has gone off
the pavement, then the sand and/or grass which collect on the
tires provide absolutely NO traction at all, so just the act
of getting back to the pavement will likely result in
numerous spins.

In general, cornering is more difficult in wet conditions
than in dry conditions.  To help ease this difficulty in
cornering, simulation-style games will sometimes allow the
player to change the car's tuning during a race (if not, the
player will be forced to try to survive using the tuning set-
up chosen before the beginning of the race).  Tuning is
covered in more detail in another section below, but the main
aspect to change for wet-weather conditions is to raise the
downforce at the front and/or rear of the car; this will help
improve cornering ability, but will result in slower top-end
speed and slower acceleration.  If the car's brake strength
can be adjusted, it should be lowered, as strong braking will
raise the likelihood of hydroplaning off the pavement;
lowering brake strength will also mean an additional
lengthening of the braking zone for all but the gentlest
corners of a given circuit.

When the circuit is damp or wet, rumble strips and concrete
extensions (which are usually painted) should be avoided as
much as possible.  The water tends to bead on the paint used
for rumble strips and concrete extensions, making them
incredibly slippery, especially if a drive wheel is on a
rumble strip or concrete extension while the player is in the
process of turning the car; this will cause undue wheelspin
in that particular drive wheel, usually resulting in the car


The 2002 F1 racing season begins with a set of 'flyaway'
(non-European) races.  This fast, flat, attractive circuit is
built around Melbourne's beautiful Albert Park Lake, using
actual city streets which generally receive little traffic
during the year.  There are usually plenty of trees on both
sides of the track, with a nice view of Melbourne's buildings
as you come through Turns 12 and 13.  The Albert Park circuit
features many long, gentle, no-braking corners, allowing for
incredible top-end speed all around this completely-flat
circuit.  However, these are tempered with several moderate-
and hard-braking corners, as well as many dark shadows
obscuring long stretches of the pavement, especially in wet

Pit Straight: The front straight is fairly long, following a
moderate-braking corner (Turn 16).  However, Turn 1 requires
an early braking zone.

Turn 1 (Jones): A moderate-braking right-hand corner.  If you
miss the braking zone here, there is a wide area in which you
can recover.  Traffic will often bunch up entering Turn 1,
even beyond the start of a race.

Turn 2 (Brabham): Immediately following Turn 1, this is a
gentle left-hand turn which can be taken at full speed if the
car had slowed enough for Jones.  Excellent acceleration out
of Turn 1 makes the exit of Turn 2 and the ensuing
straightaway a prime passing zone.  Beware the barrier on the
right on exiting Turn 2; do not hit the throttle too soon
exiting Turn 1.

Turn 3: This is a hard-braking right-hand semi-blind corner
following a long straightaway; the braking zone begins
earlier than it would otherwise appear, so make use of the
distance-to-corner markers on the left side of the raceway
(however, the distance-to-corner markers are difficult to
spot due to their coloration).  Again, there is a wide
recovery area here.  A little speed can be made coming out of
Turn 3, but the straightaway is virtually non-existent,
requiring moderate braking for Turn 4.  This is definitely
NOT a place to pass (safely) unless you have EXCELLENT brakes
and little or no tire wear.  Traffic tends to bunch up here
for Turns 3 and 4.

Turn 4: A left-hand corner requiring at least moderate
braking.  To the outside of the corner is a wide, paved
recovery area.  The inside of Turn 4 is also a wide paved
zone, but short-cutting Turn 4 by more than one car length
will also result in a Stop-Go Penalty.  Good acceleration out
of Turn 4 can set up a good passing opportunity.

Turn 5 (Whiteford): A gentle right-hand corner through the
trees which leads to a nice straightaway.  With a flawless
racing line, no braking is necessary here; otherwise, a quick
lift off the accelerator will be needed to keep the left side
of the car off the nearby barrier.

Turn 6 (Albert Road): A semi-hidden moderate-braking right-
hand corner.  Traffic will sometimes bunch up here, as
drivers try to spot the corner.  A wide recovery zone is
available here as well, but take care not to shortcut the
corner.  Blasting through Turn 6 without braking will almost
certainly result in loss of control (with subsequent
spinning, sliding, flipping, and/or crashing) due to the
angle of the rumble strips.

Turn 7 (Marina): Immediately following Turn 6, Turn 7 is a
very gentle left-hand corner which brings you alongside the
northernmost end of Albert Park Lake.  Beware the barrier on
the right on corner exit.

Turn 8 (Lauda): This is almost not a turn at all, as it
curves extremely gently along the shoreline, but the course
map on the race's official Web site lists this as a corner.

Turn 9 (Clark Chicane): This corner is a tight right-hand
turn which requires moderate or hard braking.  Traffic almost
always bunches up here.  If you miss the braking zone here,
you will end up out in the blue-green dust-covered area.
   The important thing to remember here is that the official
corner is the SECOND turn of the pavement to the right; using
the first turn to the right is a shortcut, and a penalty will
ensue.  Also, there is a white traffic line from the left-
hand side of the pavement on approach curving to follow the
left-hand side of the first turn to the right; this can cause
significant confusion, so the driver must be constantly aware
that this is not an official race marking and thus NOT follow
it to the shortcut.

Turn 10 (Clark Chicane): This is almost not a turn at all, as
it curves extremely gently to the left and back along the
shoreline.  There is absolutely NO room for error on the
right side of the track, as the pavement runs directly up
against the barrier.  Once you pass underneath the second
pedestrian bridge and see the grandstands ahead on the right,
drift to the right to set up the best racing line for Turns
11 and 12.

Turns 11 and 12 (Waite): This extended left-right chicane is
tricky.  Turn 11 can be taken flat-out, but Turn 12 (Waite)
CANNOT be successfully navigated at full speed without either
shortcutting the corner (using the pavement inside the rumble
strips) or ending up beached in the kitty litter on the exit
of the chicane.  Sliding even one pixel across the rumble
strips on either side of the chicane generally results in a
Stop-Go Penalty.  A flawless racing line is crucial to
success here and in the ensuing straightaway.

Straightaway: The pavement runs directly up against the
barrier on the left side of the course here, creating
problems for cars on the left whose engines suddenly expire.

Turn 13 (Ascari): This is a semi-blind right-hand corner
requiring moderate braking if you are alone; traffic tends to
bunch up here.  The recovery area again is quite wide, with a
long run-off strip if needed.  This leads to a short
straightaway which can be a prime passing zone if
acceleration out of Turn 13 is strong.

Turn 14 (Steward): A light-braking, right-hand corner with a
wide recovery area.  Experts should be able to take this
corner at top speed (if not in traffic) with a flawless
racing line, or by dropping the right-side tires onto the
grass at the apex of the corner.  This is a good place to
pass on braking upon entering the corner.

Turn 15: Do not be fooled by the run-off lane which proceeds
directly ahead into an unmoving barrier; there IS a J-turn to
the left here, requiring hard braking.  This is also a good
place to pass on braking when entering the corner.  Note that
the Pit Entry is almost immediately to the right upon exiting
the corner, so be sure to look for cars moving slower than
expected as they enter Pit Lane.

Turn 16 (Prost): But, be careful with the approach and exit
angles for this right-hand turn, as the barrier (and a
grandstand) is just a few feet off the pavement on the left
as you exit the corner.  A new addition from previous
versions of the game, the Pit Lane barrier begins at the
entry of Turn 16, so shortcutting is not a possibility, and
dropping the right-side tires off the pavement is also not a
good option.  This leads onto the Pit Straight.

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins to the right shortly after
Turn 15. It is possible to enter at a fairly high speed, but
there will be a sharp turn to the right very quickly,
requiring moderate or heavy braking.  Before entering the
main Pit area, however, is a tight right-left chicane, so be
prepared to truly slam on the brakes, or else the nose of
your car will slam into the Pit Lane barrier.


Kuala Lampur includes very wide recovery zones all along the
course, on both sides of the pavement, with very few
exceptions.  The main grandstands are nestled 'within' the
course itself, as the 'back straight' and the 'Pit Straight'
flank each side of the main spectator seats, linked by a
tight left-hand hairpin.  While the pavement is rather wide
for an F1 circuit (with its width widely considered as the
'future' of F1 racing venues), it is actually more difficult
to drive than it appears on television, especially the 'back'
part of the course (behind the main grandstands).

Pit Straight: The main grandstands are to the left as you fly
down the Pit Straight.  Slam on the brakes at the end of the
Pit Straight, as the first two corners are VERY tight.

Turns 1 and 2: Turn 1 is a TIGHT right-hand corner, followed
immediately by the not-as-tight-but-still-difficult left-hand
Turn 2.  If there is traffic ahead, the cars will certainly
bunch up here.  The first corner on the opening lap of any F1
race is characterized by cars bunching up together; given the
downhill slope of Turns 1 (beginning at the exit) and 2, cars
are even more likely than usual to bump each other and/or the
barrier here.  Fortunately, the outside of Turn 2 has a wide
(sand-filled) recovery area, so if a major accident takes
place, it might be wise to (carefully) take to the sand to
avoid the worst of the chaos and debris.   Remember that Turn
2 is slower than Turn 1, so if following another car, it is
imperative to allow plenty of room to keep from ramming the
other vehicle.

Turn 3: Accelerate hard through this sweeping right-hand
corner.  No braking is necessary here.  The course begins a
gentle uphill climb here.

Turn 4: It is easy to overrun this corner, either on entry or
on exit, but the wide patch of sand to the outside of the
corner is available to slow you down in these situations.
This right-hand corner is the crest of the uphill climb which
began in Turn 3.  Moderate braking will be required here.

Turns 5 and 6: Turn 5 is an easy left-hand corner, followed
by the similarly-shaped right-hand Turn 6.  In Turn 5, the
barrier comes very close to the pavement on the inside of the
corner, so be careful not to roll up on the grass here.
There is plenty of space for recovery on the outside of each
corner, which may be important exiting Turn 6 as it is rather
easy to run too wide on exit.  Both corners can be taken
either flat-out or with simply a slight lifting off the

Turns 7 and 8:  These two right-hand corners are best taken
in a wide 'U' formation.  There is plenty of kitty litter on
the outside of the corners here should you lose concentration
and drive off the pavement.  While experts with a death wish
may be able to speed through these corners at full throttle,
braking or significantly lifting off the accelerator would be
a far better choice.

Turn 9: This tight left-hand J-turn is made even more
difficult by the brief uphill slope leading to the corner
itself, which hides the view of the pavement as the course
turns to the left here.  Early braking is key, or else you
WILL be caught out in the sand trap.  Moderate or heavy
braking will be needed here, depending on your top speed
coming out of the 'U' formation of Turns 7 and 8.  If you
have excellent confidence in your braking ability (especially
with fresh tires after a pit stop), this is a great place to
pass other cars on braking, but only if attempted near the
inside of the corner - otherwise, you will be far off the
racing line, and any car(s) you try to pass will force you
out into the sand.

Turn 10: After the tightness of Turn 9, Turn 10's right-hand
corner can be taken at full throttle.  The course climbs
gently uphill here, cresting shortly after the exit.

Turn 11: The course begins a gentle downhill slope near the
entry of Turn 11, then turns to the right as the downhill
slope continues.  Moderate braking will be needed here, as
Turn 11 is tighter than Turn 10.  This is also a good place
to pass other cars on braking.  It is also easy to overrun
the corner, so there is plenty of sand to the outside of the
corner to slow you down in this instance.

Turn 12: After a short straightaway, the course turns to the
left.  If you hug the apex tightly, you should be able to
take Turn 12 without braking.  Again, plenty of sand awaits
those who slide off the pavement here.

Turn 13: This is a nasty right-hand decreasing-radius hairpin
with no paved swing-out area on exit, making the corner far
more difficult than it at first appears.  The first 60
degrees can be taken at top speed, although some braking is
greatly recommended here.  After that, moderate or heavy
braking is required to keep from rolling out into the kitty
litter on the left side of the pavement.  Strong acceleration
is key on exit.

Straightaway: This straightaway runs along the 'back side' of
the main grandstands.  This is a very long straightaway, so
powerful acceleration out of the Turn 13 hairpin can provide
good passing opportunities here, especially for those using a
low-downforce set-up.  Near the end of the straightaway, a
line of pavement leaves to the right, but this is NOT the Pit
Lane entry used for F1 races.

Turn 14: This is the final corner of the course, and
certainly the most important in a close race.  Following the
long straightaway on the 'back side' of the main grandstands,
this is a left-hand hairpin, much tighter than Turn 13.  It
is key here to approach from the extreme right side of the
pavement, tightly hug the apex, and accelerate strongly while
drifting back out to the right on exit.  The Pit Lane entry
begins here about halfway through the hairpin, so beware of
slower cars going in for servicing.  This is also a good
place to pass on braking, but be ready to block any
aggressive drivers trying to pass you as they slam on the
throttle on exit.

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins halfway through the Turn 14
hairpin (the final corner of the course).  Keep tight to the
right entering the hairpin, to allow those passing you to
dive to the left-hand apex of the corner; after the first 90
degrees of the corner, drive straight ahead along the Pit
Lane.  However, you will quickly find the Pit Lane curving to
the left, so make sure you have slowed enough to not bang the
front wing or front-right tire against the barrier.


Most F1 courses are driven clockwise; built on a steep
hillside, Interlagos is driven counter-clockwise, which
causes 'undue' fatigue to drivers' necks as the race
progresses.  The upper part of the course features two
extensive segments of flat-out, full-throttle, high-speed
driving.  Conversely, the lower part of the course (where the
most clock time is spent per lap) features tight corners and
several significant elevation changes.  However, despite
these two very different sections of the circuit, the car
set-up is not quite as tricky or as key here as at

Pit Straight: This is the highest point of the course in
terms of elevation.  There is no room to pull off the course
here if there is a problem with a car, as the barriers rub
against the pavement on both sides of the track.  This is
also the fastest portion of the course, leading into the most
dangerous set of corners in all of F1 racing.  There are
several left-hand fades along the 'Pit Straight.'  This
'straightaway' is the longest stretch of flat-out
acceleration of this course.  The optimal racing line is hard
to the left, so be careful not to rub the left-side tires
against the barriers, especially when passing the Pit Lane
Entry.  The Pit Entrance is also to the left; beware of
slower cars entering Pit Lane.

Turn 1 (S do Senna): Especially since this corner follows an
incredibly long and fast 'Pit Straight,' this is by far the
most dangerous turn on the course, and thus perhaps the most
dangerous corner in all of F1 racing.  This is a tight, left-
hand, semi-blind, downhill corner requiring severe braking
long before reaching the turn.  Unless you have PERFECT
confidence in your car's braking AND turning ability, this is
definitely NOT a place to pass!!!  For those who overrun the
corner, there is a continent-size patch of kitty litter.

Turn 2 (S do Senna): Following immediately after Turn 1, it
is perhaps best to coast through this right-hand corner, with
strong acceleration on exit to set up prime passing
opportunities in Curva du Sol or along the following
straightaway.  Beware the Pit lane barrier practically
rubbing up against the pavement here on the left.
(Historical note: The Pit Lane used to rejoin the main course
at the exit of Turn 2, but FIA and the drivers deemed that
this was too dangerous, so Pit Exit was moved to beyond the
exit of Turn 3.)

Turn 3 (Curva du Sol): Immediately following S do Senna, Turn
3 is a gentle left-hand corner which can also be taken at top
speed.  Just beyond the exit of Turn 3, the Pit Lane rejoins
the main course on the left.  Curva du Sol leads into the
second-longest straightaway of the circuit.

Straightaway: This long straightaway presents a gentle
downhill slope leading to the lower portion of the course.
Keep to the right on exiting Curva du Sol so that cars
rejoining the race from the Pit Lane can blend in without

Turn 4 (Lago): This corner truly begins the lower portion of
the course in terms of elevation.  Lago is a semi-hidden
left-hand corner with a slight downward slope.  Moderate
braking is necessary here to keep from sliding the car into
the recovery zone, especially if the track is wet.  Good
acceleration out of Lago sets up great passing in the next
corner and along the following straightaway.  Do not overrun
the course, or you will be slowed severely by the sand and

Turn 5: A gentle left-hand turn, this can be taken at full
throttle.  The course begins to slope upward again.  However,
do not try to take this corner too sharply on the apex, as
the barrier may not agree with your tactics.

Straightaway: This is effectively the last straightaway
before the Pit Straight at the beginning of the course.  The
course here slopes upward, so cars with excellent
acceleration out of Turns 4 and 5 can pass those with poor
uphill speed.

Turn 6 (Laranjinha): This is the beginning of a pair of
right-hand corners which effectively form a 'U' shape.  The
entry of this corner can be taken at full throttle, but be
ready to touch the brakes at the exit of this corner.  Turn 6
is also on the crown of a hill.

Turn 7 (Laranjinha): The final corner of a 'U' shape in the
course, this is a right-hand decreasing-radius corner with a
gentle downward slope.

Turn 8 (Curva do S): After an almost negligible straightaway,
this incredibly tight right-hand corner requires hard
braking.  The course also begins to slope downhill at the
beginning of Turn 8.  Pinheirinho immediately follows.

Turn 9 (Pinheirinho): Immediately upon exiting Turn 8, slam
on the brakes again (or simply coast) for the sharp left-hand
Pinheirinho.  This may potentially a good place to pass other
cars.  Turn 9 is a long corner, however, so it is important
to hug the apex much longer than usual.  Extreme caution must
be taken here if racing in wet conditions, or you will find
yourself sliding into the sand.  The exit of Pinheirinho
leads to an upward-sloping straightaway.

Turn 10 (Bica do Pato): The entrance of Turn 10 begins the
final downward slope of the course, making this right-hand
corner even more difficult to navigate.  Heavy braking and
excellent vehicle control are required to maneuver the car
safely through this corner, especially in the rain.  Good
acceleration is needed exiting Bica do Pato to pass traffic
in the next corner and ensuing straightaway.  The kitty
litter is available if you overshoot the corner, but then you
will quickly find yourself rubbing against a barrier.

Turn 11 (Mergulho): This left-hand corner almost immediately
follows Bica do Pato and can be taken almost flat-out to
provide good speed along the next (very short) straightaway.
Good acceleration out of Bica do Pato makes this a good
passing zone if you have a decent racing line, otherwise you
may find yourself off the course on the outside of the

Turn 12 (Juncao): This is a tight left-hand corner requiring
moderate to heavy braking.  The final, steep uphill slope
begins here, and the exit of the corner is hidden (even in
chase view).  It is extremely easy to run off the outside of
the corner here, but a small patch of grass and another paved
lane provide some run-off relief here.  This corner leads to
the incredibly long Pit Straight.

Pit Entry: As you climb the long 'Pit Straight,' the Pit Lane
begins on the left.

Pit Exit: The Pit Lane once emptied onto the exit of Turn 2;
it now rejoins the main course just after the exit of Curva
du Sol.  This makes Pit Lane extremely long, which makes it
extremely important to select your pit strategy carefully in
long races.


The Grand Prix of San Marino begins the 'European Season' for
F1.  The Imola circuit is challenging but rather fun.  Again,
this is a 'counterclockwise' circuit, but, oddly, the Pits
and Paddock are located on the outside of the circuit and not
on the inside.  There is extremely little tolerance for
shortcutting the chicanes.  Due to the slope of the grass on
the inside of the corner, Turn 6 (Tosa) is essentially a
blind corner unless traffic is present to mark the course for

Pit Straight: This is a long straightaway, which enables high
speeds as the cars cross the Start/Finish Line.  Good exit
speed out of the final chicane makes for prime passing and a
good show for the spectators.  The Pit Straight fades to the
left at the exit of Pit Lane (which is aligned with the
Start/Finish Line).  Once past the Pits, there is a barrier
directly against the right side of the track.

Turns 1 and 2 (Tamburello): This is a left-right chicane.
Turn 1 requires moderate braking, but if you slow enough in
Turn 1, you should be able to drive at full throttle through
Turn 2 and beyond.  If you try to take the entire chicane at
full speed, you may be able to make it through Turn 1 fairly
well, but you will quickly find yourself in the grass on the
outside of Turn 2 and banging against the nearby barrier.  If
you completely miss the braking zone for Turn 1, there is a
huge patch of kitty litter to help you recover.

Turn 3 (Tamburello): Immediately following Turn 2, Turn 3 is
a soft left-hand corner which can be taken at full speed.
Strong acceleration out of Turn 1 and through Turn 2 makes
this a good passing zone.  Following this corner is a
significant straightaway.

Turns 4 and 5 (Villeneuve): This is another left-right
chicane, though not nearly as lengthy as the first chicane.
Care must be taken not to slide off the course at the exit of
Turn 5.  It is possible for experts to fly through this
chicane at top speed (if not encumbered by traffic) by
rolling up on the rumble strips, but doing so produces a
significant chance of losing control of the car and crashing
into the barrier on the left side of the circuit as the sandy
recovery area severely narrows on approach to Tosa.  The
course slopes upward at the exit of this chicane.

Turn 6 (Tosa): This is a semi-blind left-hand corner which
continues the upward slope of the course.  Moderate or even
severe braking is required here, or else your car will be in
the kitty litter and bounding toward the spectators.  Traffic
is actually a benefit in approaching this corner, as the
course is largely hidden from view given the slope of the
grass on the inside of the corner, but other cars are easy to

Straightaway: The course continues up the hill here.  Just
beyond the overhead billboard, the track fades to the right
as it begins its gentle downward slope, but then leads
directly into Piratella.

Turn 7 (Piratella): The course continues downward here, with
the slope increasing.  This is a left-hand semi-blind corner.
It is rather easy to slip off the pavement here and into the
kitty litter on the outside of the corner.  Any passing here
is best made tight to the apex of the corner, perhaps with
only the right-side wheels on the pavement or rumble strip.

Turn 8: Barely a corner at all but more than a fade, the
course gently turns to the left here.  This is a full-speed
'corner,' but the racing line is still very important here.

Turns 9 and 10 (Mineralli): This is a pair of right-hand
corners which effectively function as a decreasing-radius 'U'
formation and are best taken in this manner.  Turn 9 can
probably be taken at full speed, but upon exit to the outside
of Turn 9, severe braking is needed and extra steering to the
right is required to safely navigate around the decreasing-
radius Turn 10.  The track begins another (steep) uphill
slope in Turn 10.  Tightly hugging the apex allows for prime
passing through Turn 10.  Care must be taken not to enter
Turn 10 too fast, or else you will be off the course on the

Turn 11 (Mineralli): Immediately following Turn 10, the left-
hand Turn 11 continues the upward slope of the course.  Care
must be taken not to slip off to the right of the track on

Turns 12-13 (Alta Chicane): This is a tight right-left
chicane.  Other cars generally slow significantly for this
chicane, so a full-speed maneuver here in traffic is NOT
advised.  In fact, attempting to take this chicane at top
speed will require rolling up on the rumble strips, and you
will almost certainly lose control and either spin, flip, or
collide with the all-too-close barrier to the right side of
the course.  The barrier to the outside of Turn 13 is very
close to the track, so be careful not to slip off the course.
Alta Chicane, due to its placement just slightly beyond the
crest of the circuit, is also 100% unsighted on approach, so
it is very easy to miss the chicane and either overshoot it
or turn too early.

Straightaway: The course begins its final downhill slope
here, fading gently first to the left, then to the right.

Turns 14 and 15 (Rivazza): This is a left-hand 'U' formation.
Moderate braking is required entering Turn 14, but then Turn
15 can be taken at full speed (IF you slowed enough in Turn
14), although some may feel more comfortable lightly tapping
the brakes here.  Caution must be taken to use enough braking
entering the 'U' formation, or else you will end up in the
sand on the right side of the track.

Straightaway: This is the final long straightaway before
reaching the Pit Straight.  However, the official course
fades to the right just after passing underneath the Helix
banner; driving straight ahead (the pavement of the old
course) and thus missing the entire final chicane results in
a penalty.  The end of this straightaway provides two
options: 1.) Keep driving straight ahead onto Pit Lane; 2.)
Turn left for the final chicane.

Turns 16 and 17 (Bassa Chicane): This is the final chicane
(left-right) of the course.  To the outside of Turn 16 is the
Pit Lane entry, so be mindful of slower cars entering Pit
Lane as you approach the chicane.  Moderate braking is
required entering Turn 16, but then Turn 17 requires light
braking.  Be VERY careful riding the rumble strips in Bassa
Chicane, as wheelspin on the rumble strips is likely to force
the car out of control, which means either getting caught in
the kitty litter inside Turn 17, or colliding with the
barrier (which is VERY close to the pavement) on exiting the

Pit Entry: Instead of turning left for Turn 16, keep driving
directly ahead.  However, there is no room for slowing once
you leave the main course, so stay tight to the right side of
the pavement as you slow to enter Pit Lane.


The Catalunya circuit is challenging, especially the two
hairpins and the final corners of the race.  For observers
and drivers alike, plenty of action can be found at the
Spanish Grand Prix.  In the real-world 2002 F1 season,
traction control was not permitted until the Grand Prix of
Spain (EVERY event in Grand Prix Challenge permits traction

Intertextal Note: The Catalunya circuit is also used in the
PS2 game Le Mans 24 Hours.

Pit Straight: As usual, incredible speeds can be attained
here.  Watch for cars rejoining the race from the right side
of the straightaway about two-thirds of the way along its
massive length.

Turn 1 (Elf): This is a right-hand corner which requires
moderate braking.  Strong acceleration out of Turn 1 creates
great passing opportunities all the way to Repsol.
Attempting to take Turn 1 at top speed will either cause you
to lose control as you run up on the rumble strips, or send
you too far off course to survive Turn 2 intact.

Turn 2 (Elf): Immediately following Turn 1, the left-hand
Turn 2 can usually be taken at top acceleration.  With strong
acceleration out of Turn 1, this is a prime passing zone.

Turn 3 (Seat): A sweeping right-hand increasing-radius corner
which can be taken at full speed with a flawless racing line.
This is also a good place to pass slower cars, especially if
you have the inside line.

Turn 4 (Repsol): This is a semi-blind right-hand hairpin
corner which requires moderate or heavy braking.  The barrier
on the inside of the corner rests almost directly against the
track, and blocks your view around the corner.  This can
actually be a good place to pass on braking, but only with
extreme caution (and usually only if the car you wish to pass
takes the wide line around the corner).  Don't come too hot
into this corner or else you will find yourself in the sand.
After clearing the first 90 degrees, you should be able to
accelerate fairly well if not encumbered by traffic.

Turn 5: After a very short straightaway, this is a semi-blind
left-hand hairpin, a bit tighter than Turn 4.  Moderate or
heavy braking will be needed here, or you will definitely
find yourself in the kitty litter.

Straightaway: This straightaway fades to the left.  Strong
acceleration out of Turn 5 can create passing opportunities,
especially in the braking zone for Wuth.

Turn 6 (Wuth): With a good racing line, you should be able to
brake lightly to clear this semi-blind, slightly-downhill,
left-hand corner.  Beware the barrier on the inside of Wuth.
The exit of Wuth has an immediate fade to the right, so do
not commit too much to turning left here, or the front-left
of the car will be shaking hands with the barrier.

Turn 7 (Campsa): This right-hand corner can be taken at full
speed with a flawless racing line.  Note that the official
circuit is to the right; do not drive directly ahead onto
another patch of pavement, or you will be assigned a Stop-Go

Turn 8 (La Cacsa): Severe braking is required for this left-
hand corner.  While not suggested, you may be able to pass
other cars on braking here.  As with Wuth, stay off the
rumble strips and grass on the inside of the turn, or you
will risk losing control of the car.  This is a 'J' turn, and
the corner seems to go on forever before you reach the exit.

Turn 9 (Banc Sabadeau): Shortly following Turn 8, moderate or
heavy braking will be needed here for the right-hand, upward-
sloping corner.  This is also a 'J' turn which is nearly a
double-apex corner.  If you need a recovery area anywhere on
the course, it will most likely be here.  It is possible to
pass slower cars here by tightly hugging the inside of the
turn, even running the right-side tires on the rumble strips
or just slightly in the grass.

Turn 10: Light braking may be needed for this right-hand
corner.  The key here is to truly hug the inside of the turn
and accelerate strongly through the exit.  Watch for slow
cars here preparing to go to Pit Lane for servicing.

Turn 11: Entering this right-hand corner, the Pit Lane begins
on the right, so be on the lookout for very slow cars here.
If you take this final corner too tightly, or make a VERY
late decision to go to the pits, you will certainly damage
the front of the car on a barrier.


This course may only have seven corners, the fewest of the
circuits used in the 2002 racing season, but it is still a
highly-challenging technical course for the drivers.  The
circuit itself is built on a steep hillside, with the Paddock
area and the Pit Straight located at the lowest elevation of
the course.  The significant elevation changes and poorly-
placed barriers make this a particularly challenging circuit
to safely navigate for 90+ minutes.

Pit Straight: Long and straight; main grandstands to the
left, Pit Lane to the right.  Rather mundane, except that the
entire Pit Straight has a slow uphill climb into the Castrol
Curve.  The beginning of the Pit Straight (coming off
Mobilkom Curve) is also a bit bumpy.

Turn 1 (Castrol Curve): After a rather mundane Pit Straight,
the Castrol Curve is anything but mundane.  This is a right-
hand uphill corner which requires moderate braking.  The Pit
Lane rejoins the main course on the right at the exit of the
corner.  Because of the steep slope of the hill, it is all
too easy to drive off the outside of the corner and into the
massive sand trap.  If you lose your concentration and forget
even to slow down, you will likely find yourself airborne
once you hit the rumble strip; similarly, if you try to take
this corner at top speed, you may indeed find yourself
fearfully looking up at the ground.
   Note: The inside edge of the rumble strip along the apex
of Castrol Curve has a short vertical blade.  Running the
right-side tires up against or onto this vertical blade is
likely to cut one or both right-side tires.

Straightaway: There are a few fades in the straightaway as
the course continues its uphill climb.  The end of the
straightaway (approaching Remus Curve) has a suddenly steeper
grade and demands total concentration.

Turn 2 (Remus Curve): This is a TIGHT right-hand 'J' turn
requiring heavy or even severe braking, and complete
concentration to navigate safely (even when not dealing with
traffic); any speed over 30MPH is definitely too fast for
Remus Curve.  The uphill climb of the circuit continues
through most of the turn, making high or even moderate speeds
impossible here.  Rolling the right-side tires up on the thin
patch of grass on the inside of the Remus Curve will almost
definitely result in loss of control of your vehicle.  Even
worse, this is a blind corner due to the barrier.  Aggressive
drivers will certainly end up overrunning the Remus Curve on
exit and find themselves beached in the kitty litter.  If you
use the accelerator too soon on exit, you WILL find yourself

Straightaway: Located at the highest elevation of the course,
this straightaway has a fade to the right, then another to
the left.  After the second fade, prepare for braking before
arriving at the Gosser Curve.  Make use of the distance-to-
corner markers, or else you risk overrunning Gosser Curve.

Turn 3 (Gosser Curve): Another tight right-hand corner, heavy
braking will be required here to avoid sliding off the course
and into yet another sand trap.  This is also a blind corner,
due to the barrier on the inside of Gosser.  The circuit
begins to slowly descend in elevation here.

Straightaway: This is actually NOT a straightaway at all; the
course map does not list the right-hand turn, but it is
definitely more than just a fade.  If you overrun this, you
will end up in the same sand trap as before - it is simply
extended along the left side of the course from the outside
of Gosser until well beyond this unofficial corner.

Turn 4 (Niki Lauda Curve): This is a wide left-hand corner
which will require moderate or heavy braking, especially
since this is a blind corner due to the slope of the hill on
the inside of the turn; even if you slow greatly before
entering the corner, you will likely be tapping the brakes as
you progress through Niki Lauda.  There is another wide patch
of sand on the outside of the corner, stretching almost all
the way to the entrance of the Gerhard Berger Curve.  A short
straightaway separates Turns 4 and 5.
   Note that the circuit does indeed turn to the left here;
the patch of pavement which continues straight forward will
lead you into a barrier.

Turn 5 (Gerhard Berger Curve): This is almost identical to
the Niki Lauda Curve, but with an additional sand trap which
begins on the inside of the corner.

Straightaway: Again more than a fade but not listed as an
official corner, there is a 'turn' to the right shortly after
exiting the Gerhard Berger Curve.  About two-thirds of the
way along, the course enters a scenic forested area; this
'transition' section is also rather bumpy.

Turn 6 (Jochen Rindt Curve): This is a blind right-hand
corner which can be taken with light braking, or just a small
lift of the accelerator; the best way to judge this corner is
by using the right-side barrier as a guide.  Another sand
trap awaits those who run off the outside of the corner.  A
short straightaway follows Jochen Rindt.

Turn 7 (Mobilkom Curve): This is a right-hand corner which
will require light or moderate braking.  The Pit Lane begins
on the right just before the entry to Mobilkom, so be careful
not to bump cars slowing before going to the pits.

Pit Entry: Located just before the entrance to the Mobilkom
Curve, the Pit Lane is to the right.  This is a very long pit
lane, so plan to stay out of here as much as possible!!!


'To finish first, first you must finish.'  The Monaco circuit
is a highly daunting temporary street course, especially from
the Driver View, as the barriers are FAR too close for
comfort, and passing is virtually impossible for even expert
drivers.  If there is a problem with a car, there are
extremely few places to safely pull aside, so all drivers
must be constantly wary of damaged vehicles, especially slow
or stationary cars around the many blind corners.  The most
significant key to simply finishing a race at Monaco is
SURVIVAL, which means a slow, methodical, patient race.
Aggressive drivers (like myself) would almost certainly end
up dead - or at least driving an extremely beat-up vehicle -
driving the Monaco circuit for real!!!  For a comparison, the
Surfer's Paradise circuit in the old PlayStation game Newman-
Haas Racing is a sweet dream compared to the Monaco
circuit!!!!!  The circuit is extremely narrow, to the point
that if a car bangs a barrier, there is a rather good chance
that it will ricochet into the opposite barrier (if not into
a nearby vehicle).  While driving this circuit, players may
want to have 'I Will Survive' playing on auto-repeat!!!

Pit Straight: Not straight at all, the 'Pit Straight' fades
to the right along its entire length.  Near the end, the Pit
Lane rejoins the main course from the right.

Turn 1 (Sainte Devote): This is a tight right-hand semi-blind
corner; heavy braking is required long before reaching Sainte
Devote.  To the left on entering this corner is one of the
few areas to pull off the course if there is a problem.
Overshooting the corner results in smashing the front wing
against the unmoving barrier.  The uphill portion of the
course begins here.

Straightaway (Beau Rivage): Not really straight with its
multi-direction fades, the circuit climbs steeply uphill
here.  Because of the fades, this is actually NOT a passing
zone; you may think you have enough room to pass a slower car
and actually pull up alongside it, but then you and the
slower vehicle will end up bumping each other and/or a
barrier because of a fade.  Three-wide racing is definitely
NOT an option here!!!!!

Turn 2 (Massanet): This is a sweeping decreasing-radius left-
hand blind corner requiring moderate or heavy braking on
entry and light braking (or coasting) as you continue through
the turn.  If you come in too fast, the corner workers will
be scraping the right side of your car off the barrier at the
end of the race; if you take the corner too tightly, the same
will happen for the left side of the car.  The exit of
Massanet is the highest elevation of the circuit... which has
only just begun, even if it IS 'all downhill' from here!!!

Turn 3 (Casino): Moderate braking will be needed for the
right-hand Casino.  This corner almost immediately follows
Massanet, and begins the long downward trajectory of the
course.  This corner is actually wider than most, to the
extent that a car in trouble may be parked along the barrier
on the outside of the corner.  Be careful not to scrape the
left-side barrier while exiting Turn 3; similarly, do not
overcompensate and scrape the right-side barrier at the apex
of Casino.

Turn 4 (Mirabeau): Following a medium-length downhill
straightaway, heavy braking is needed for this right-hand
blind 'J' turn.  If you miss the braking zone, your front end
will be crushed up against yet another barrier. This corner
continues the course's downhill slope, which adds to the
difficulty of the turn.

Turn 5 (Great Curve): Following an extremely short
straightaway, this left-hand hairpin is one of the slowest in
all of F1 racing (even 40MPH is a dangerous speed here).  If
you have excellent braking ability, you can actually PASS (a
rarity!!!) by taking the tight inside line; otherwise, it
would be best to drive through the Great Curve single-file.
If there is traffic ahead, it may simply be best to fall in
line, as two-wide cornering here is extremely difficult to do
without damaging the car.

Turns 6 and 7 (Portier): This pair of right-hand corners form
a 'U' shape, but neither can be taken at any respectable
speed.  Between these two corners is a pull-off area on the
left, with another to the left on exiting the 'U' formation.
Turn 7 is the slowest of the two corners, and is the most
difficult in terms of the almost-nonexistent view of the
track  (made even worse by the coloring of the barriers and
advertisements in this portion of the circuit).  Accelerating
too soon out of Turn 7 means banging the left side of the car
against yet another immovable barrier.  Do not let the
beautiful view of the water distract you from the race.  The
circuit is a little bumpy exiting Portier, especially if you
stay tight to the inside of the corner on exit.

Straightaway (The Tunnel): This 'straightaway' is actually a
very long right-hand fade in a semi-tunnel (the left side
provides a view of the water).  However, even on a sunny day,
visibility here is poor due to the sun being at a 'wrong'
angle compared to the circuit, and this is made even worse
should you be following a car with a malfunctioning or
expired engine; even brightly-colored vehicles are difficult
to see due to the inherent darkness in The Tunnel.  Start
braking shortly after entering back into the sunlight
(assuming Dry Weather is active) for the chicane.

Chicane (Nouveau Chicane): The course narrows as you come
around the chicane, but then 'widens' back to 'normal' at the
exit.  There are several barriers in the chicane area, thus
preventing drivers from simply plowing through and
shortcutting the chicane.

Turn 8 (Tobacco): This left-hand corner is best taken with
moderate braking.

Turns 9-12 (Swimming Pool): This is essentially a double
chicane around the swimming pool in the classic 'bus stop'
configuration.  Turns 9 and 10 form a tight left-right
combination, for which moderate braking is required, although
little or no braking can be used if you roll straight over
the rumble strips with a solid racing line and no encumbering
traffic.  After an extremely brief straightaway, Turns 11 and
12 form the opposite configuration (right-left), but are even
tighter and require moderate braking at best.  This opens out
onto a short straightaway where you MIGHT be able to pass ONE

Turns 13 and 14 (La Rascasse): This is a tight left-right
chicane requiring moderate braking for Turn 13 and heavy
braking for Turn 14.  Even worse, Turn 14 is a 'J' turn, so
the racing line is also very important here.  The Pit Lane is
to the right at the exit of this chicane.

Turns 15 and 16 (Anthony Hoges): A tight right-left chicane,
these are the final corners of the Monaco circuit.  The
course narrows here through the chicane, then 'widens' to
'normal' for the Pit Straight.

Pit Entry: The entrance to the Pit Lane is to the right
immediately after clearing La Rascasse.  Given that La
Rascasse is a blind section, on every lap, expect a slower
car here headed for the pits.


This incredible circuit is built on an island, accessible to
spectators only via subway.  Much of the course runs along
the southern and northern shores of the island.  This course
is also unusual in that the paddock area is to the outside of
the course (as at Imola), along the northern shore of the
island.  The long, sweeping straightaways provide for
excellent top-end speed - a much-welcome change from the
slow, tight corners and the many unforgiving barriers of the
streets of Monaco (the previous race venue in the season) -
but there are several tight corners here to challenge both
drivers and vehicles.  Mind the Casino Hairpin (Turn 10), the
westernmost corner of the course.  Also tricky is the Senna
Curve, as it immediately follows the first corner of the

Pit Straight: This follows the final chicane of the circuit.
As the Pit Lane rejoins the main course from the left, the
Pit Straight fades to the right, setting up Turn 1.

Turn 1 (Senna Curve): This left-hand corner will require
moderate braking, and immediately flows into the Senna Curve.

Turn 2 (Island Hairpin): This is a right-hand hairpin corner
requiring heavy or severe braking.  It is very easy to run
too wide here, slipping off into the grass.  Likewise, it is
rather easy to overcompensate and cut the corner, which can
cause the car to spin if taken too fast.  Extreme caution is
required here if racing in wet conditions, as the severity of
Island hairpin can itself cause the car to slide.  Perhaps
the best tactic is to enter Turn 1 from the extreme right of
the pavement, and brake smoothly all the way through to just
beyond the apex of Senna Curve before accelerating again.
Beware the barrier to the left on exit.  A moderate
straightaway follows the Senna Curve, so acceleration from
the exit is important.

Turns 3 and 4: This right-left chicane can provide a good
passing zone.  Turn 3 is tight and semi-blind, but passing on
braking is an option for those who know the chicane well.
Turn 4 is an easier corner, allowing good acceleration on
exit, but it is still easy to overshoot the exit of the
chicane and bang the right side of the car against the nearby
barrier.  Expert drivers MIGHT be able to blast through this
chicane at full acceleration by making judicious use of the
rumble strips.  This chicane begins the segment of the
circuit closely bounded by barriers.

Turn 5: This sweeping right-hand corner can be taken at full
speed, unless you are coping with traffic.  Be careful not to
hug the apex too tightly, or your right-side tires will be on
the grass here.

Turn 6: Finally coming out of the section of Monacoesquely-
close barriers, this left-hand corner will require moderate
braking, or you will be flying through the grass toward the
spectators in Grandstand 33.  This leads out to a very brief

Turn 7 (Concorde): Following a very short straightaway, Turn
7 is a light-braking right-hand corner.  On the outside of
Turn 7 is a short, steep hillside with a barrier, so DO NOT
run wide entering the corner, as it is possible to send the
vehicle airborne!!!  It is easy to run wide on exit and slip
off the course and into the barrier on the left, so be

Straightaway: The course runs along the southern shore of the
island here.  Unfortunately, the extremely tall barrier
prevents much of a view, which actually forces your eyes to
be transfixed on the road and any other cars ahead.  Once you
pass underneath the pedestrian bridge, begin braking for the
upcoming chicane.

Turns 8 and 9: This right-left chicane is similar to Turns 6
and 7 in that overrunning the chicane leaves you driving
through the sand directly toward another grandstand full of
spectators.  Moderate braking will be needed to safely enter
the chicane's tight right-hand corner.  The second corner of
the chicane is a gentler left-hand turn, but you might still
run off the pavement on exit and grind the right side of the
car against the barrier, or roll up on the rumble strips on
the inside of the corner and lose control of the car.
Accelerate strongly out of the chicane to set up passing
possibilities along the following straightaway and into
Casino Hairpin.

Straightaway: About two-thirds of the way along this
straightaway, the raceway fades to the left.  Begin braking
early for Casino Hairpin unless you really want to beach the
car in the kitty litter; to begin braking after passing
underneath the second pedestrian bridge is almost certainly
too late for this braking zone.

Turn 10 (Casino Hairpin): This is a tight right-hand hairpin
requiring heavy or even severe braking, depending on when you
begin braking for the corner.  Somehow, this corner seems to
be longer than it really is, so be judicious with the
accelerator until you see clear, straight track ahead.

Straightaway: On exiting Turn 10, the course fades to the
right, then back to the left.  However, no braking is
required here.

Turn 11: Officially marked on course maps as a corner, the
course actually only fades to the right here, thus no braking
is required.  You should be fairly high up in the gearbox by
the time you reach Turn 11.

Straightaway (Casino Straight): The Casino Straight (named
for the casino in the middle of the island) runs parallel to
the northern shore of the island on which the course is
built; there is not much of a view to the left, but it is not
very interesting anyhow (especially when compared to Albert
Park Lake in Melbourne).  This is by far the longest
straightaway of the entire course, so much of the time spent
here will be in your car's top gear, quite likely achieving
speeds over 200MPH.  The Casino Straight leads to the final
(right-left) chicane of the course, as well as the entry for
Pit Lane.

Turns 12 and 13: This is a right-left chicane which can be
cleared (without traffic) with light or moderate braking.
The exit of the chicane flows onto the Pit Straight.  The Pit
Lane entry runs straight ahead in line with the Casino
Straight, so cars slowing on the left are likely heading in
for servicing, and may block your optimal racing line if you
are continuing on-course.  Unfortunately, Grand Prix
Challenge does NOT have the bright-green concrete extension
at the exit of Turn 13, which makes precision cornering
imperative here.

Pit Entry: As you enter the final (right-left) chicane, the
Pit Entry runs straight ahead.  Once clear of the main
course, there is very little room for deceleration before the
Pit Lane's own tight right-left chicane, so it is very
important to slow down on Casino Straight before reaching the
Pit Entry.  Keep as far to the left as possible when slowing
on Casino Straight, allowing other cars to keep to the right
as they prepare for the final chicane.

Pit Exit: Pit Exit comes at about one-third of the way around
Island Hairpin (Turn 2).  Note that this configuration for
Pit Exit was first used in the 2002 F1 season.


From a driving standpoint, the hilly Nurburgring circuit is
very much characterized by its tight corners, some of which
are semi-blind turns.  Tire wear is a definite issue in long
races here, especially in wet conditions.  Even more
important, however, is braking early for almost every corner;
perhaps only the narrow streets of Monaco require more
(early) braking than does the Nurburgring circuit.
Fortunately, Grand Prix Challenge presents the new circuit
configuration, first used in the 2002 F1 season.  The new
configuration severely changes the initial corners of the
circuit so that the course briefly doubles back behind the
Paddock area with a twisting section of tight, near-hairpin

Pit Straight: This straightaway is fairly long, but the
Start/Finish Line is near the exit of the final corner.  The
Pit Lane rejoins the course near the end of the Pit Straight,
just before the Castrol S.

Mercedes Arena
   Turn 1 (Castrol S): This first corner is a tricky right
   hand J-turn leading into the Mercedes Arena.  It is VERY
   easy to miss this corner for those with a high degree of
   familiarity with F1 games covering the pre-2002 season.
   There is a solid white line which emerges from the left-
   hand side of Pit Straight and forms the left-hand edge of
   Castrol S itself, so drivers can make use of this line to
   ensure that they keep to the right for the actual corner.
   Severe braking will likely be required for Castrol S.

   Turn 2: This is a left-hand corner which will require
   moderate braking.  Fortunately, the outside of this corner
   and the lead-up to Turn 3 is a wide paved area, providing
   plenty of recovery room for vehicles sliding off the
   official circuit pavement and allowing those vehicles to
   quickly rejoin the race.

   Turn 3: This left-hand hairpin corner is the tightest
   corner in Mercedes Arena.  There is not much straightaway
   between Turns 2 and 3, so only moderate braking should be
   required for this hairpin corner.

   Turn 4: This right-hand right-angle corner leaves the
   Mercedes Arena and rejoins the pre-2002 configuration of
   the Nurburgring F1 race venue.  Light braking may be
   useful for Turn 4, but it should also be quite easy to
   power out of Mercedes Arena at full throttle.

Turn 5: Light braking or a quick lift of the accelerator will
be necessary for this left-hand corner.  However, hard
braking will be required for the Ford Curve ahead.  Beginning
at the top of Turn 5, the course moves downhill.

Turn 6 (Ford Curve): This is a hard right-hand corner,
practically a 'J' curve.  The course continues its downhill
slope here, which significantly adds to the difficulty of the
turn, especially in wet condditions.  Braking too late here
means a trip through the kitty litter, while riding up on the
inside rumble strips usually means losing control of the car.
This is definitely NOT a place to pass unless absolutely

Straightaway: The course fades to the left here.  If you can
accelerate well out of the Ford Curve, you should be able to
pass several cars here as you continue downhill.

Turn 7 (Dunlop Curve): Severe braking for this hairpin is a
must, unless you really want to drive through the sand.
Again, rolling up on the rumble strips on the inside of the
curve may cause you to lose control of the car; however, I
have several times induced slight wheelspin of the right-side
tires on the rumble strip, which helped to swing the car
around the corner just a little faster.  The course continues
gently uphill here toward the Audi S.

Turns 8 and 9 (Audi S): Entering the left-right Audi S, the
uphill slope of the course increases, making it very
difficult to see the course more than a few feet ahead.  The
exit of Turn 8 is the crest of this hill.  Unless traffic
blocks your racing line, the entire Audi S section can be
taken at top speed if you have a good racing line, so good
acceleration out of the Dunlop Curve will be very beneficial
for passing entering Turn 8 and/or exiting Turn 9.

Turn 10 (RTL Curve): With the rise in the course entering the
left-hand RTL Curve, this appears to be identical to Turn 8
on approach.  However, you MUST use moderate braking entering
the RTL Curve, or you will definitely be off in the grass on
the outside of the curve.  After a short straightaway, this
corner is followed by the gentler BIT Curve.

Turn 11 (BIT Curve): This right-hand curve will require light
or moderate braking, depending on how much acceleration was
used in the brief straightaway following the RTL Curve.

Turn 12 (Bilstein-Bogen): This is a gentle right-hand semi-
corner which can be taken at full throttle.  From here to the
Veedal S, the course makes its final and steepest upward

Turns 13 and 14 (Veedal S): This is an extremely tight left-
right made even worse for the drivers by its placement at the
very crest of the hill.  For those who overshoot the chicane,
there is a newly-added barrier to collect you and your car.

Turn 15 (Coca-Cola Curve): A 'J' turn to the right, moderate
braking is required here to keep from sliding off the course.
The entry of the Coca-Cola Curve is also where the Pit Lane
begins, so cars may be slowing on approach to go to Pit Lane
for servicing.  This is the final corner of the circuit.

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins at the entry of the final
corner.  It is extremely important to slow down before
entering Pit Lane; if you come in too fast, you will
certainly damage the front of the car on the barrier.  Keep
tight to the right for Pit Entry, to allow those continuing
the race to have the prime racing line to the left of the


Built on an airport site which is contracted to host the
Grand Prix of Great Britain until at least 2010, this
historic course features wide run-off areas in most places.
The final segment of the circuit is very similar to - but
also VASTLY different from - The Stadium at Hockenheim.

Pit Straight: The Start/Finish Line is directly at the
beginning of the Pit Straight.  There is no room for error on
the right side of the track, as the Pit Lane barrier is
directly against the pavement.

Turn 1 (Copse): This is a moderate right-hand corner which
can be taken at full speed, but be careful to not run off the
course at the exit of the turn.  The best racing line is to
tightly hug the apex, but the Pit Lane barrier is right there
against the pavement, so it is imperative to keep the right-
side tires from rubbing the barrier.  Turn 1 exits onto a
long straightaway.

Straightaway: The Pit Lane rejoins the main course from the
right about 1/3 of the way along the straight.

Turns 2-5 (Bechetts): This is a set of left-right-left-right
'S' curves. Turns 2 through 4 can be taken at full speed or
with very quick tapping of the brakes if using an ample
amount of downforce, but Turn 5 requires moderate braking to
keep to the pavement.

Turn 6 (Chapel): This is a gentle left-hand corner which can
be taken at full speed.  This opens onto Hangar Straight.

Straightaway (Hangar Straight): At 738.28m, this is by far
the longest straightaway of the course.  Powerful
acceleration out of Turn 5 (the final corner of Bechetts) can
lead to good passing opportunities along Hangar Straight
and/or entering the almost-nonexistent braking zone for Turn
7 (Stowe).

Turn 7 (Stowe): Light braking or a quick lift off the
accelerator will be required here (unless blocked by traffic)
in order to remain on the pavement - IF using a good amount
of downforce.  This is a tricky, sweeping, right-hand corner
followed immediately by a left-hand semi-corner.  This is the
southernmost point of the course.

Straightaway (Vale): If you can somehow successfully navigate
Stowe without braking or lifting, then you should be able to
continue passing others fairly easily along Vale, especially
if they had to brake heavily in Stowe.

Turns 8 and 9 (Club): There is a stretch of pavement to the
left, but that is NOT the official course.  The official
corner is a tight left-hand turn followed by the increasing-
radius right-hand Turn 9, leading out onto another long
straightaway (Abbey Straight).

Turns 10 and 11 (Abbey): Like the previous set of corners,
there is another stretch of pavement to the left which is not
part of the official course.  The official Turn 10 is a tight
left-hand corner, but not as tight as Turn 8.  This is
immediately followed by a Turn 11, a right-hand corner which
can be cleared with little or no braking depending on how
much you slowed entering Abbey.  Be careful not to slip off
the course and rub the nearby barrier on exiting Abbey.

Straightaway (Farm Straight): With good acceleration out of
Abbey, good passing opportunities can be made here.

Turns 12-16: This final segment of the circuit is very
similar to The Stadium at Hockenheim.  However, these similar
segments cannot be approached in the same manner.

   Turn 12 (Bridge): Immediately after passing underneath the
   pedestrian bridge, you will enter a complex similar to The
   Stadium at Hokkenheim.  This is a right-hand corner which
   can likely be taken at full speed.

   Turn 13 (Priory): This left-hand corner will require
   moderate braking.

   Turn 14 (Brooklands): Another left-hand corner, this one
   requires heavy braking.  There is a small sand trap for
   those who miss the braking zone.

   Turn 15 (Luffield): This set of right-hand corners
   essentially forms a 'U' shape, and requires moderate or
   severe braking to avoid sliding off into the kitty litter.
   The exit of Luffield can be taken flat-out all the way to
   Turn 5.  The entry to Pit Lane is on the right shortly
   leaving Luffield.

   Turn 16 (Woodcote): Barely a corner but more than a fade,
   the course eases to the right here.  The right-side
   barrier begins abruptly here (be careful not to hit it).

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins to the right between Luffield
and Woodcote.  The new Pit Lane has a gentle right-hand
swing, so you can come into Pit Lane at top speed and have
plenty of room to slow.


The Magny-Cours circuit is characterized by long, sweeping
straightaways, and fairly quick corners. The Adelaide hairpin
will almost definitely cause trouble, especially for
aggressive drivers, and is one of the slowest corners in
modern F1 racing.  This is a very fun course to drive
(admittedly a very subjective statement), but its layout can
produce problems from the standpoint of hearing other cars:
Three of its main straightaways are almost exactly parallel
to each other with little distance and no large obstacles
between them, sometimes making it difficult to determine
where other cars are truly located around you as you try to
anticipate where the next group of traffic that you will need
to navigate is located.  The circuit also has extremely wide
areas along most of the main course for a car to pull aside
should a major malfunction arise.  This is the circuit where
Michael Schumacher won the 2002 Drivers' Championship, with
six races yet to be run in the season.

Pit Straight: Following the tight High School chicane, strong
acceleration through the Pit Straight creates good passing
chances through Great Curve and into Estoril.  However, the
tightness of the High School chicane and the incredibly close
proximity of the Pit Lane barrier requires immense caution
and headache-causing concentration as you come onto the Pit

Turn 1 (Great Curve): In accordance with its name, this is a
sweeping left-hand corner which can be taken flat-out unless
encumbered by a lot of traffic.

Turn 2 (Estoril): Either light or moderate braking will be
needed for entering the VERY long right-hand 180-degree
Estoril; in either case, you will almost certainly be tapping
the brakes repeatedly through Estoril.  It is quite easy to
roll the right-side tires off onto the grass, and it is just
as easy to slip off onto the grass on the outside of Estoril
- both can easily occur, whether navigating traffic or
driving alone.  Pit Exit is on the left entering Estoril.

Straightaway (Golf): The Golf Straight if by far the longest
of the course and includes several fades to the right.

Turn 3 (Adelaide): The right-hand Adelaide hairpin is
EXTREMELY tight.  The key here is to brake EARLY, as you will
be downshifting from your top gear to your lowest gear
rapidly; if you begin braking too late, you will be off in
the grass.  If you accelerate too soon out of Adelaide, you
will be rolling through the kitty litter and losing valuable
track position.  Even 30MPH is likely to be too fast here.
   Note: There is a crane positioned inside the Adelaide
hairpin (admittedly a VERY strange location for a crane),
with the apex of the corner just a few meters beyond.  Using
this crane is an ideal indicator of the distance to the
corner to judge one's necessary braking zone.

Straightaway: Acceleration out of Adelaide is important for
passing other cars here.  There are a few fades in the course

Turns 4 and 5 (Nurburgring): This is a right-left chicane
which will require light braking.  It is possible to fly
through Nurburgring without braking by making use of the
bright-green extension on the inside of Turn 5; however, this
extension is significantly shorter than it was in F1
Championship Season 2000.

Turn 6 (180 Degrees): This is quite true - the official name
of this corner is '180 Degrees' according to the official Web
site of Magny-Cours.  This is a wide left-hand hairpin
nestled well within the Estoril hairpin.  Running too wide
here will put you out in the sand; running too close to the
apex could put you up on the rumble strips and force you to
lose control.  While this corner is not as slow as the
Adelaide hairpin, you really do not want to try pushing very
much faster here.

Straightaway: The third of the three parallel-running
straightaways, this 'straightaway' has several fades before
the Imola chicane.

Turns 7 and 8 (Imola): This right-left chicane should require
light braking, except for cars with a flawless racing line.
The bright-green extension on the inside of Turn 8 is longer
than in F1 Championship Season 2000, which could well be used
for top-speed navigation of the chicane.  A short
straightaway out of Imola sets up the Water Castle curve.

Turn 9 (Water Castle): Somewhere between a standard 'J' turn
and a hairpin, this is an increasing-radius right-hand corner
leading into the final straightaway of the circuit.

Turns 10 and 11 (High School): There is a false line of
pavement to the right as you near the official chicane; this
false pavement runs directly up to an immovable barrier (I
believe this is the Pit Entry for other forms of racing at
the circuit).  The official chicane requires moderate braking
on entering, and allows for a VERY short burst of
acceleration on exit.  If you completely miss this chicane,
you will blast through the sand trap and break the front end
on a perpendicular barrier blocking any direct access to Pit

Turn 12 (High School): On entry, the Pit Lane begins to the
left.  The official corner is a TIGHT right-hand turn which
requires moderate or even heavy braking; wheel lock is very
much a possibility here, especially in wet conditions.  Speed
is an extreme concern here; it is virtually impossible to go
too slow, but going too fast will definitely result in a
crash (with great possibility of bouncing into follow-up
crashes with other cars, or with a nearby barrier).

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins to the left at the entry of
Turn 12.  The Pit Lane has its own sharp right-hand turn
almost immediately, so it is best to begin slowing (or
rather, barely accelerating) as you leave the High School


2002 marked the beginning of the 'new' Hockenheim.  Gone is
the decades-old, tradition-filled, scenic-forest, high-speed
circuit with the nearly-infinite straightaways where
downforce was a driver's enemy.  Now, Hockenheim is a much
smaller race venue, occupying not even half the total size of
its former grandiose incarnation.  Pit Straight, North Curve
(the first turn), and The Stadium have all survived intact;
everything else about the 'shortened' circuit is new.

Pit Straight: This is an extremely short straightaway
compared to the rest of the course.

Turn 1 (North Curve): This right-hand corner will require
moderate braking to keep out of the expansive kitty litter.
The Pit Lane rejoins the course from the right at the exit of
North Curve.  Acceleration out of North Curve is of key
importance due to the length of the ensuing straightaway.

Turns 2-3: This is a right-hand near-hairpin corner requiring
moderate braking, followed immediately by a full-throttle
left-hand corner.

Turn 4 (Parabolic Curve): This is not quite a corner, but is
labeled as such on the official circuit map.  Parabolic Curve
is by far the longest stretch of flat-out acceleration at the
shortened Hockenheim venue.  The trees on the left side of
the pavement are really all that remains of the decades-old,
tradition-laden Hockenheim venue.

Turn 5 (Hairpin): This right-hand hairpin corner is just
about as sharp as La Source at Spa-Francorchamps, but there
is no barrier at the apex to obscure a driver's vision around
the corner itself.  It is very easy to swing wide on corner
exit, which is where the similarity with La Source comes to
an ABRUPT end - La Source provides for ample swing-out room
on corner exit, whereas Hairpin does not >:-(

Turn 6: Light braking will be required for this right-hand

Turns 7 and 8: This is a pair of left-hand corners, each
requiring moderate braking.

Turn 9: This right-hand corner returns to the old part of the
circuit and leads up to The Stadium.

Turns 10-13 (The Stadium): This is similar to the final
segment of the Silverstone circuit.  However, do not expect
to drive The Stadium the same way you would the final segment
at Silverstone.

   Turn 10 (Entrance to the Stadium: Agip Curve): Light
   braking may be required here, but you should be able to
   pass through the Agip Curve without any braking at all
   (especially if your racing line began with the 'extra'
   pavement on the left before the Stadium).  A short
   straightaway follows.

   Turn 11 (Continuing through the Stadium: Sachscurve): This
   is a left-hand wide hairpin turn, requiring moderate
   braking.  Be careful not to end up in the grass, either
   entering or exiting the corner.

   Straightaway (Continuing through the Stadium): This short
   straightaway has a fade to the left, followed by a fade to
   the right.

   Turns 12 and 13 (Exiting the Stadium: Opel): The first
   right-hand corner is somewhat tight, and heavy braking
   will be required here; the old course rejoins the current
   course from the left on exit, so if you run wide in this
   corner, you can likely recover here using the old
   pavement.  The final corner of the circuit is a right-hand
   turn which will require moderate braking.  The Pit Lane
   entry is to the right just before the official Turn 13.

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins to the right at the entry of
Turn 13 (the final corner of the Stadium).


The Hungaroring circuit has wide run-off areas, which can be
quite important, especially for Turn 1.  It is imperative to
qualify near the top of the grid and be (one of) the first
through this corner, as traffic backs up tremendously here at
the start of a race - moreso than at most other circuits due
to the extremely nasty configuration of the first turn.

Pit Straight: Like Interlagos, Pit Straight is the highest
elevation on the course and also a very long straightaway.
Actually, the highest elevation is at the very end of the Pit
Straight, at the entrance of Turn 1, due to the continual
uphill slope.

Turn 1: It's all downhill from here, almost literally.  This
tight right-hand hairpin corner is downhill all the way
through, making early braking a necessity; plus, you will
certainly be tapping the brakes all the way through this
important first turn.  If you do overrun the corner, there is
a huge sand trap for your inconvenience.  However, if you
roll up on the inside rumble strips, expect your car to spin
violently and collide with anything nearby.

Turns 2 and 3: After a short straightaway, Turn 2 is a left-
hand 'J' turn requiring moderate braking.  Turn 2 is quickly
followed by Turn 3, a light-braking right-hand corner which
must be taken at full throttle on exit to set up passing
opportunities through Turn 3 and along the ensuing

Turn 4: This moderate left-hand corner may require light
braking or may be taken flat-out.  Plenty of kitty litter
awaits those who overrun the corner.

Turn 5: Moderate braking is necessary for this right-hand 'J'
turn.  Plenty of sand is available on both sides of the
pavement here, just in case.

Turns 6 and 7: The CPU is very touchy about this right-left
chicane; virtually ANY short-cutting here results in a Stop-
Go Penalty.  There is plenty of sand here as well, just in
case.  Turn 6 is tight, requiring heavy braking.  Turn 7
requires moderate braking, and beware the barrier on exit if
you happen to swing out too wide.

Turn 8: This moderate left-hand corner may require light
braking, but may also be taken as a full speed passing zone
if using rapid reflexes and a flawless racing line.

Turn 9: Almost immediately following Turn 8, this right-hand
corner definitely requires moderate braking to keep to the
pavement.  Accelerate strongly out of Turn 9 to set up good
passing opportunities.

Turn 10: An easy left-hand corner which can be taken at top
speed, but only with a good racing line.  This is a prime
place to pass if sufficient acceleration was made out of Turn

Turn 11: Shortly following Turn 10, the right-hand Turn 11
requires moderate braking to stay out of the kitty litter on
the outside of the corner.

Turns 12 and 13: This is a right-left chicane for which the
CPU is again very touchy concerning shortcutting.

Turn 14: This is a narrow 'J' turn to the left.  At first,
there is plenty of sand to the outside for those who overrun
the corner, but then a metal barrier rubs up against the
pavement beginning about halfway around the corner, so DO NOT
overrun the corner if you like having the right side of the
car intact.  The course begins its steep uphill trajectory
here.  A very short straightaway follows.

Turn 15: At the entry of this final corner is the Pit Lane
entry, so beware of slower cars on the right.  The official
corner itself is a tight, uphill, right-hand hairpin with
little room for those who overrun the corner.  Accelerate
strongly (but not too early) out of this final corner to pass
along the Pit Straight and put on a show for the spectators.
Do not take this corner too tightly, or you will damage the
right-side tires on the Pit Lane barrier.

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins at the entry of Turn 15 on the
right; begin slowing (rather, do not accelerate much) at the
end of Turn 14 (the left-hand 'J' turn).


This is a well-storied course used for many forms of racing.
The longest course used in the 2002 F1 season, the forest
setting is rather scenic.  This is also home to the famous
Turn 1 - the La Source hairpin - which is deemed by many to
be the slowest corner in all of modern F1 racing.  As at
Hungaroring, it is very important to be at the front of the
grid on the first lap to safely navigate the first turn.  Due
to the forest setting, much of the circuit is perpetually
shadowed, which is especially significant if racing in wet or
overcast conditions.  Beginning with the 2002 season, Pit
Entry has been moved so that all vehicles MUST take the first
left-right of the Bus Stop Chicane; Pit Entry is on the right
within the too-brief straightaway of the chicane.

Pit Straight: Strong acceleration out of the Bus Stop chicane
allows SOME room for passing here.  Fortunately, the
Start/Finish Line has been moved back away from La Source.
The course also slopes downward here, all the way through La

Turn 1 (La Source): This is an incredibly tight right-hand
hairpin.  Fortunately, there is plenty of swing-out room and
plenty of recovery space, both paved, which can provide a
great passing opportunity by taking an extremely wide racing
line. The downward slope of the course is not much here, but
it does add to the difficulty of this hairpin turn.  Brake
lock-up and the resultant flat-spotting of the tires is quite
easy to inadvertently accomplish here, especially in wet
racing conditions, so caution is extremely important.  If a
car in front of you takes the wrong racing line, passing here
can be easy if you can suddenly dart either to the outside or
the inside of the turn.  Passing can also occur here if you
brake REALLY late.

Straightaway (Eau Rouge): Immediately at the exit of La
Source is where Pit Lane rejoins the main course, so try to
keep away from the inside of the course here, especially
since the barrier prevents cars exiting La Source to see cars
exiting Pit Lane (and vice versa).  To the right is the Pit
Lane for the 24-hour races held at Spa-Francorchamps; take
care not to smash into this concrete Pit Lane barrier,
especially if you are too hard on the accelerator exiting La
Source and force the car into a slide or a spin to the right.
   Immediately after passing the 'other' Pit Lane and
entering Eau Rouge (Red Water), the straightaway has several
fades during a semi-blind steep uphill climb into Turn 2.  It
is all too easy to misjudge the racing line and wind up out
in the sand and the grass on either side of the pavement
here, so memorization of this segment of the circuit is just
as important as perfect timing in order to keep the car on
the pavement.  Until this corner can be taken flawlessly, it
is best to keep to single-file driving through the fades.

Turn 2 (Eau Rouge): This is an easy right-hand corner at the
top of the steep uphill climb.  The kitty litter on either
side of the course fades away shortly after the corner.

Straightaway (Kemmel): The course truly enters the forested
area here, with trees lining both sides of the course and
casting lengthy shadows which make this area of the circuit
rather dark when racing in wet conditions.  Cars can easily
achieve speeds over 200MPH by the end of this straightaway.
The end of Kemmel is where Mika Hakkinen made 'The Pass' on
Michael Schumacher in the 2000 Grand Prix of Belgium.

Turns 3-5 (Malmedy): This is a right-left-right combination
of corners.  Moderate or even heavy braking is necessary
entering Malmedy (Turn 3), but little or no braking is needed
for Turn 4.  After an almost non-existent straightaway, light
braking is needed for Turn 5 to keep from running into the
nearby grandstand.  The Malmedy complex has plenty of run-off
room, comprised of both sand and grass, with minor short-
cutting permitted by the CPU.  Entering Malmedy, be sure not
to keep going straight along another stretch of pavement
(part of the old circuit), which leads to a barrier.

Straightaway: Between Malmedy and Bruxelles (the French
spelling of 'Brussels,' the capital of Belgium), the course
takes a steep downward trajectory.  This can be a good
passing zone for those who did not need to use the brakes
(much) leaving the Malmedy complex.

Turn 6 (Bruxelles): The course continues downhill all the way
through this right-hand hairpin, making heavy braking a
necessity before the corner as well as light braking most of
the way through Bruxelles, especially if the tires are rather
worn.  If any corner is to be overrun on a regular basis
during the course of the race, this is it (due to the
downhill slope), so the wide sandy recovery area may actually
be a blessing in disguise.  However, due to the slope of the
hill, running up on the rumble strips on the inside of the
turn may well result in a spin or other loss of control; if
done 'correctly,' this may also result in launching the
vehicle airborne.

Turn 7: Shortly following Bruxelles, this left-hand corner
requires moderate braking.

Turn 8 and 9 (Pouhon): These two easy left-hand corners
essentially form a wide 'U' shape, and require light or
moderate braking.  There is plenty of run-off room here, if
needed, on both sides of the pavement.

Turns 10 and 11 (Fagnes): This right-left complex will
require moderate braking on entry, and possibly tapping the
brakes through Turn 11 as well.  Accelerate well out of
Fagnes to pass one or two cars on the short straightaway
which follows.

Turn 12 (Stavelot): This is another right-hand corner,
requiring light or moderate braking.  It is highly important
to accelerate STRONG out of Stavelot, as you won't be using
the brakes again until the Bus Stop Chicane.

Turn 13 (Blanchimont): This is a long, sweeping, left-hand
corner which must be carried at top speed (from Stavelot) or
else you WILL be passed by others.  The trees here are
pretty, but keep your eyes on the road, especially due to the
shadows cast over the circuit.

Turns 14-17 (Bus Stop Chicane): This is a tight left-right
followed by a super-short straightaway and a tight right-
left.  The beginning of the chicane is at the top of a small
rise, so the first two turns are blocked from view on
approach (especially from Driver View) unless other cars are
there to mark the course for you.  Moderate braking should be
used for both parts of the Bus Stop, but true experts can
semi-easily fly through the Bus Stop at top speed without
incurring a Stop-Go Penalty for shortcutting the chicane (but
be prepared to save the car should the rumble strips cause
you to lose control).

Pit Entry: Pit Entry is to the right just after Turn 15 (the
second corner of the Bus Stop Chicane).  This makes a trip to
Pit Lane MUCH trickier than in previous seasons, but is safer


This historic high-speed track hosts a highly partial pro-
Ferrari crowd - affectionately known as the 'tifosi.'  The
2000 Italian Grand Prix is the race in which a volunteer
corner worker was killed at the Roggia Chicane, due to all
the flying debris from the first-lap multi-car collision
caused by Heinz-Herald Frentzen missing his braking zone.
This is also the final race of the 'European' season; the
final two races are both overseas, 'flyaway' races (at
Indianapolis and Suzuka).

Pit Straight: Strong acceleration out of the Curva Parabolica
can create prime passing opportunities along the Pit
Straight, the longest straightaway at Monza.  The Pit Lane
begins on the right shortly after exiting the Parabolica.

Turns 1-3 (Rettifilio): The new chicane here is a tight
right-left with a gentle right turn back into line with the
original pavement.  The inside of Turn 1 has a paved
'extension' which may be of benefit if there is an incident
in the chicane, which would most likely occur on the opening
lap of a race.

Turn 4 (Biassono): This sweeping right-hand corner among the
thick trees can be taken flat-out.  To the left is a long,
wide area of sand, but the corner is so extremely gentle that
the sand should not be needed for any reason unless you blow
an engine or severely puncture a tire.

Turns 5 and 6 (Roggia): Despite the flatness of the Monza
circuit, this chicane is extremely difficult to see on
approach unless traffic is present to mark the pavement for
you, so it is very easy to overrun the chicane.  This is a
very tight left-right chicane, so moderate or heavy braking
is required; shortcutting through here at full throttle is
possible by making use of the new, narrow, bright-green
extensions on the inside of each corner, as the CPU us rather
tolerant of shortcutting here (compared to previous
incarnations of the game).  There is a large sand trap for
those who miss the chicane altogether.

Turn 7 (First Lesmo): This right-hand corner requires
moderate braking.  There is a wide sand trap on the outside
of the corner, just in case.  Beware the barrier on the
inside of the corner.  About 150MPH is the maximum speed
here, or you risk slipping off the course and into the kitty
litter.  If you shortcut the first two chicanes of the game,
this will be the first time you absolutely need to use the

Turn 8 (Second Lesmo): This right-hand corner is a little
tighter than First Lesmo, and also has a significant area of
kitty litter on the outside of the corner.  Moderate braking
will be needed here.  Again, beware the barrier on the inside
of the corner.  Generally, about 140MPH is the maximum speed
here to keep from sliding off the pavement.

Straightaway/Turn 9 (Serraglio): This is really just a fade
to the left, but the official course map lists this as a
curve.  Counting this as a fade, this marks about the halfway
point on the longest straightaway of the Monza circuit.
There is sufficient room to pull off the course here on
either side if necessary, except when passing underneath the
first bridge.  The circuit is extremely bumpy between the two

Turns 10-12 (Ascari): The Ascari chicane is more difficult
than it seems.  Turn 10 is a left-hand corner requiring at
least light braking.  This is followed immediately by a
right-hand corner requiring moderate braking.  Turn 12 can be
taken at full acceleration if you slowed enough in Turn 11.
Wide areas of grass and sand are available for those
overruninng any part of the chicane.

Straightaway (Rettilineo Parabolica): This is the second-
longest straightaway at Monza and a prime passing zone,
especially with powerful acceleration out of Ascari.

Turn 13 (Curva Parabolica): This final corner is a very-wide
increasing-radius right-hand hairpin. Light or moderate
braking is required on entry, but after about one-third of
the way around the hairpin, stand on the accelerator all the
way through to Rettifilio.  The outside of the Curva
Parabolica has an immense expanse of kitty litter, but this
really should not be necessary unless you suddenly need to
take evasive action to avoid someone else's accident.  After
the Lesmo corners, the Curva Parabolica is the third and
final place where braking is a definite MUST.

Pit Entry: Shortly after exiting the Curva Parabolica, the
Pit Lane begins on the right.  This is perhaps the shortest
Pit Lane in all of F1; there is virtually NO room for
deceleration once leaving the main course, so cars going in
for servicing will begin slowing at the exit of the Curva


The inaugural U.S. Grand Prix was significant for two
reasons.  First, for the first time ever, cars were racing
'backward' (clockwise) at Indianapolis.  Second, cars were
racing in the rain, which is virtually unheard-of in American
auto racing (CART is an exception, but only on road courses).
Fortunately, FIA gave the live rights to ABC for the American
audience, a very intelligent move to try to increase F1's
exposure in the American market; this would not have been
nearly as effective if SpeedVision had been permitted the
live rights for the race, as SpeedVision is a cable-
/satellite-only channel, and not all cable systems carry
SpeedVision in their more affordable packages (in Tucson, I
personally pay $25 extra per month just to get the package
which includes SpeedVision, now renamed Speed Channel).
Except the Pit Straight, the U.S. Grand Prix circuit features
wide run-off areas, especially along Hulman Blvd.  According
to many of the drivers, part of the 'mystique' of the U.S.
Grand Prix at Indianapolis is the closeness of the
spectators; at no other F1 circuit are the fans literally
'just across the wall' from the cars (the main grandstands at
Albert Park would come closest).  The U.S. Grand Prix begins
the final 'flyaway' (non-European) races of the 2002 season.

Pit Straight: This is the same as the Pit Straight used for
the Indy and NASCAR races here, but the F1 cars drive in the
'wrong' direction (clockwise).  Expect top speeds close to or
even exceeding 200MPH.

Turns 1 and 2: After more than 25 seconds at full throttle,
this tight right-left combination can be deadly if you miss
the braking zone.  Brake early and hard to safely navigate
Turn 1 in first or second gear, then accelerate violently
through Turn 2.

Turn 3: This is a sweeping right-hand corner which can be
taken at top speed.

Turn 4: This is a long right-hand 'J' turn requiring moderate
braking to keep to the pavement.

Turn 5: Another right-hand corner, this corner requires light
or moderate braking, and can be a good passing zone with good
braking on entry.

Turn 6: This left-hand hairpin requires good braking
throughout.  Accelerating too soon will certainly put you out
on the grass.

Turn 7: This is a right-hand 'J' turn onto the famous Hulman
Blvd., which leads to the Indy Museum.  Moderate braking is
need here, but there is fortunately an immense paved swing-
out area on exit  which stretches much of the way toward Turn

Straightaway (Hulman Blvd.): This is the longest straightaway
of the infield section of the Indianapolis F1 circuit, so
strong acceleration exiting Turn 7 is key here.

Turn 8: Turning to the left, this corner requires moderate or
heavy braking, depending on your car's top speed on Hulman
Blvd., and is rather easy to miss if not marked by traffic.
However, the following straightaway is extremely short, so do
not expect to accelerate much (if at all) before 'Mickey' and

Turn 9 ('Mickey'): This is a tight right-hand 'J' turn,
nicknamed 'Mickey' by the sportscasters at the inaugural F1
race at Indianapolis.  This is a second-gear corner at best,
but first gear is probably a better choice here.

Turn 10 ('Mouse'): This tight left-hand hairpin corner was
nicknamed 'Mouse' by sportscasters.  Any dry-conditions speed
above 40MPH will certainly force you off the course and into
the grass.  A strong, short burst of acceleration out of
'Mouse' can set up a good passing opportunity in Turn 11.
Take care not to induce wheelspin on exit.

Turn 11: This long right-hand corner is the final corner of
the course requiring braking.  It is still fairly easy to
slip off the course (especially in wet racing conditions), so
be careful here.  From here all the way to the end of the Pit
Straight, you should be fully on the accelerator for
approximately 28 seconds before braking for the first corner.

Turn 12: This right-hand corner brings the cars back out onto
the oval used for Indy and NASCAR races, and coming back out
onto the banking may be a little challenging at first.  No
braking is required here.

Turn 13: This is the banked 'Turn 1' of the Indy and NASCAR
races here, but taken in reverse (clockwise) for the U.S.
Grand Prix.  It is important to hug the apex of the corner
tightly, but keep off the infield grass.

Pit Entry: The Pit Lane begins just before Turn 13.  There is
plenty of room to enter Pit Lane and slow down, so keep up to
speed while still on the main circuit.


This world-famous circuit in figure-eight style is used for
many forms of auto and motorcycle racing; as such, those who
have played other racing games (such as Moto GP World Tour or
Le Mans 24 Hours) may already have some familiarity with the
Suzuka circuit.  One of the most famous sights of the
'circuit' is the large Ferris Wheel on the left behind the
grandstands as cars pass along the Pit Straight.  This is the
circuit where Michael Schumacher won the 2000 Driver's
Championship.  Suzuka was once the official test circuit for
Honda, with the figure-eight configuration ensuring that
there were a near-equal number of both left-hand and right-
hand turns; similarly, the circuit was purposely designed to
include as many types of corners and situations as possible,
which makes the Suzuka circuit more technically difficult
than it might at first appear to Suzuka novices.

Pit Straight: Good speeds can be achieved here with strong
acceleration out of the chicane.  The Pit Lane rejoins the
course from the right near the end of the Pit Straight.

Turn 1: This right-hand (almost double-apex) hairpin requires
moderate braking on approach, and you will likely be tapping
the brakes through the hairpin itself.  This begins an uphill
climb, and it is difficult to see the left side of the
pavement on exit, so be careful not to run too wide and end
up out in the sand.  There is really no reason to overrun the
hairpin on entry, as the corner is quite easily identifiable.

Turns 2-5 (S Curves): This is by far the hardest section of
the course - tight left-right-left-right corners.  The first
of the 'S' curves can likely be taken at full speed, with
light or moderate braking for Turn 3.  Turn 4 can be taken
either flat-out (not suggested) or with light braking.  No
matter what, slam HARD on the brakes for Turn 5, the tightest
corner of the 'S' section.  This entire segment of the course
continues the uphill climb, making Turn 5 particularly more
difficult.  There is ample recovery room on either side of
the course through the uphill 'S' section.  The 'S' section
is a good place to pass slower cars, if you have enough
confidence in your brakes to pass during corner entry.  No
matter what, you will NOT be surviving the 'S' curves unless
you use the brakes generously - or use only second or third

Turn 6 (Dunlop Curve): This sweeping left-hand corner is the
crest of the initial uphill segment of the course.  However,
it is best to brake lightly or at least lift off the
accelerator to keep from sliding out into the grass and sand
on the right side of the long corner.

Turn 7 (Degner): Here, the course turns to the right in
anticipation of the figure-eight pattern.  Light braking will
likely be required, but it is possible to speed through here
without braking.  To the outside of the course is a wide
expanse of grass and sand in case you overrun the corner.

Turn 8 (Degner): The final right-hand corner before passing
underneath the bridge, this turn is tighter than the previous
corner, thus moderate or heavy braking and a steady racing
line will be required here.  This is also another prime
passing zone.  Take care not to overrun Turn 8, or your
front-left tire will be damaged.

Straightaway: Accelerate strongly out of Degner and you may
be able to pass one or two cars as you race underneath the
bridge.  The course fades to the right here before reaching
the tight Hairpin.  The fade is a good place to begin braking
for Hairpin.

Turn 9 (Hairpin): This is a tight left-hand hairpin which
begins the next uphill segment of the Suzuka circuit.  It is
possible to shortcut a little here, but the grass combined
with the angle of the hill here will really slow you down and
perhaps cause you to spin and/or slide, especially in wet
conditions.  Be careful not to accelerate too soon, or you
will be out in the grass.  There is a sizeable patch of kitty
litter for those who miss the hairpin completely or lock the

Turn 10: Continuing the uphill run, the course here makes a
wide sweep to the right.  Any braking here means losing track

Turns 11 and 12 (Spoon): This is a tricky pair of left-hand
corners, in a decreasing-radius 'U' formation.  The first
corner is fairly standard, requiring little braking.
However, Turn 12 is both tighter AND slopes downhill, so
judicious usage of brakes and a pristine racing line are both
important here, especially if attempting to pass a slower
vehicle.  If you repeatedly misjudge any single corner at
Suzuka, it will be Turn 12; fortunately, there is plenty of
recovery room on both sides of the pavement here.  However,
do not roll up on the rumble strips or the grass on the
inside of Turn 12, as that will almost certainly cause you to
lose control and likely spin.

Straightaway: Power out of Spoon and rocket down the
straightaway, passing multiple cars.  After you cross the
bridge, start thinking about the chicane.  (If you feel a bit
cocky, try speeding through the Pit Lane for the support
races, located on the right as you start uphill again - this
Pit Lane will be familiar to those who have played Le mans 24

Turn 13 (130R): Shortly after crossing the bridge, the course
turns gently to the left.  Light braking or - even better - a
quick lift off the accelerator - is almost certainly required
at 130R to keep from sliding off-course, although experts can
speed through here at full throttle with an excellent racing
line and no encumbering traffic.

Turns 14-16 (Chicane): This is the trickiest part of the
course (even moreso than Hairpin), and quite likely the one
area which will determine whether or not you can execute a
good lap time.  The chicane begins with a moderate turn to
the right, then a tight left-hand corner, then ends with a
wider turn to the right and empties out onto the Pit
Straight; all of this is on a downhill slope, adding to the
inherent difficulty of Chicane.  Fortunately, the inside of
the chicane is filled with only sand, not barriers, but
shortcutting the chicane will likely result in a loss of
control (due to the rumble strips and the kitty litter), or
at least cause you to slow tremendously.  Be careful coming
out of Turn 15 so that you don't go too wide and bump the
right side of the vehicle on the Pit Lane barrier.

Pit Entry: 2002 saw Pit Entry moved to the exit of Chicane.


This section was created due to a personal inquiry, wishing
to learn more about the history of the race venues currently
used in F1 competition.  This is not intended to be a
detailed history of all the race venues, but more of a
general overview of the circuits.

The majority of information for this section comes from
circuits' official Web sites, Formula1.com
(http://www.formula1.com/), and Driver Network
(http://www.drivernetwork.net/).  To the extent possible, I
will try to update circuit wins as best as I can, although
that admittedly is not initially a priority in writing this


The Albert Park circuit is a beautiful tree-lined venue using
real Melbourne city streets encircling the serene Albert Park
Lake.  The Albert Park circuit has hosted the Grand Prix of
Australia since 1996, taking over from the Adelaide temporary
street circuit.  Over 400,000 spectators saw the 1997 Grand
Prix of Australia in person at the Albert Park venue.

The 2002 Grand Prix of Australia was extremely eventful from
the very beginning - to the extent that only eight cars
finished the race!!!  Rubens Barrichello began the race from
Pole Position (P1), but on slowing for the first corner of
the circuit, Ralf Schumacher (brother of Michael Schumacher)
rammed the rear of Barrichello's Ferrari and was sent
airborne, landing in the massive sand trap at the end of Pit
Straight with far too much damage to continue.  The incident
created a massive chain-reaction melee as the other drivers
scrambled to take evasive action... but many ended up taking
each other out of contention due to massive damage.  Seven
other drivers were forced to retire from the race due to
extreme damage.  Fortunately, there were no severe injuries -
just a lot of bruised egos and angry tempers.  Stupidly,
however, the race marshals made the decision to send out the
Safety Car instead of red-flagging the race; had the race
been stopped instead, FIA rules would have permitted all
those drivers involved in the incident to use their back-up
('T') cars when the race was restarted.  Of course, those
drivers whose cars were damaged in the opening-lap melee were
able to take advantage of the Safety Car situation to make
repairs and rejoin the race.

F1 winners at Albert Park include Damon Hill (1996), David
Coulthard (1997), Mika Hakkinen (1998), Eddie Irvine (1999),
and Michael Schumacher (2000-2002).

The official Web site of the Australian Grand Prix
Corporation (http://www.grandprix.com.au/cars/index.asp)
features information on Australian F1 driver Mark Webber.

Interestingly, there is a movement afoot - Save Albert Park
(http://www.save-albert-park.org.au/) - which aims to prevent
the relocation of the Grand Prix of Australia to a permanent
race venue.


The Sepang Circuit opened in March 1999 and includes three
circuit formations: Race Track (used for the F1 Grand Prix of
Malaysia), Go-Kart Track (using the first half of Race
Track), and Motocross Track (circuit layout not yet available
on the official Sepang Web site).  This is the second-newest
race venue in F1 competition, which began its F1 use at the
end of the 1999 season.  Sepang hosts F1, JapanGT, MotoGP,
Merdeka Endurance, Malaysian Super Series, Motocross, and
other track events (including private bookings).

Two features cause the Sepang Circuit to truly stand out
among all other F1 race venues.  The first is the incredibly
wide nature of the track itself, which has a 16m minimum
width to provide plenty of side-by-side racing action.
Aesthetically, the Sepang Circuit is literally dominated by
the main grandstand, which is nestled snugly inside the two
longest straightaways and has a roof designed to simulate
Malaysia's national flower (the hibiscus, or Rosa Sinensis -
known locally as the Bunga Raya).

Unfortunately, with the relative newness of the Sepang
Circuit, there is not much historical information to be
found.  The winners of the initial four Grands Prix of
Malaysia: Eddie Irvine (1999), Michael Schumacher (2000 and
2001), and Ralf Schumacher (2002).

See the official Web site (http://www.malaysiangp.com.my).


The Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace has hosted the Grand Prix of
Brazil intermittently since 1973, but has held the event
consistently since 1990.  As with many race venues, the
circuit was originally longer (7.914 kilometers, or 4.946
miles) than its current configuration (4.267 kilometers, or
2.667 miles).  This is also an odd venue in that races are
run counterclockwise.

This is definitely a tricky circuit to master, built upon a
steep hillside.  The very end of Pit Straight is the highest
point of the circuit, then the circuit drops away
significantly on a steep downhill S-curve which is one of the
most dangerous areas in all of current F1 racing.  The
majority of Sector 2 and the beginning of Sector 3 are a set
of tight, twisty corners connected with VERY brief
straightaways, all tempered with significant elegant changes.

F1 winners at Interlagos: Emerson Fittipaldi (1973 and 1974),
Carlos Pace (1975), Niki Lauda (1976), Carlos Reutemann
(1977), Jacques Laffite (1979), Rene Arnoux (1980), Alain
Prost (1990), Ayrton Senna (1991 and 1993), Nigel Mansell
(1992), Michael Schumacher (1994, 1995, 2000, and 2002),
Damon Hill (1996), Jacques Villeneuve (1997), Mika Hakkinen
(1998 and 1999), and David Coulthard (2001).

Unfortunately, I am currently unable to find any further
online information concerning the Interlagos venue.


Used for F1 racing since 1963, the Autodromo Enzo & Dino
Ferrari is actually located in Italy (20 miles - or 32
kilometers - from Bologna) even though it officially hosts
the Grand Prix of San Marino.  Construction of the circuit
began in 1950, and three years later was officially opened
with 125cc & 500cc motorbike events.  However, only in 1979
was the entire venue made permanent; before this time, part
of the circuit was comprised of public roads.

The 1963 F1 race was an untitled race, but was indeed part of
the Formula1 series.  In 1980, the Imola circuit hosted its
first World F1 race as the Grand Prix of Italy.  Beginning in
1981, the race at Imola was named the Grand Prix of San

Two notable major incidents occurred at Imola.  The first was
in 1989, when Ferrari driver Gerhard Berger crashed and
exploded in flames.  Nearly a full fifteen seconds later, the
flames were extinguished and Berger saved to the delight of
the concerned spectators; in fact, Berger re-entered the

Five years later, during the qualifier race and the actual
Grand Prix, Roland Ratzenberger and Ayrton Senna lost their
lives.  (There has practically been a 'cult' surrounding the
death of Ayrton Senna, and there are several Web sites which
include details as well as video of his tragic death.)  Due
to these incidents, the circuit was redesigned.

F1 winners at Imola: Nelson Piquet (1981), Didier Pironi
(1982), Patrick Tambay (1983), Alain Prost (1984, 1984, and
1993), Elio de Angelis (1985), Nigel Mansell (1987 and 1992),
Ayrton Senna (1988, 1989, and 1991), Riccardo Patrese (1990),
Michael Schumacher (1994, 1999, 2000, and 2002), Damon Hill
(1995 and 1996), Heinz-Harald Frentzen (1997), David
Coulthard (1998), and Ralf Schumacher (2001).

Visit the official Web site (http://www.autodromoimola.com/)
for more information.


The Circuit de Catalunya near Barcelona has hosted the Grand
Prix of Spain since 1997.  The circuit hosts numerous forms
of racing, including FIA Sportscar Championship, Spanish
CAR ENDURANCE, Catalunya Motorbike Championship, Spanish GT's
Championship, Truck GP, and certainly F1 Racing; Catalunya
even holds courses for the preparation of racing officials.
Many teams also use the circuit for practice and testing.
The circuit has three configurations: Grand Prix (7.563
kilometers, or 4.727 miles), National (4.907 kilometers, or
3.067 miles), and School (2.725 kilometers, or 1.703 miles).

F1 winners at Catalunya: Jacques Villeneuve (1997), Mika
Hakkinen (1998-2000), and Mika Hakkinen (2001 and 2002).

See the official Web site (http://www.circuitcat.com) for
more information.  Unfortunately, it does not have any
historical information on the circuit, nor can I find any
such information online.


The A1-Ring has been the host of F1's Grand Prix of Austria
since 1997, but also hosts Truck Grand Prix, Classic Grand
Prix, Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, and motorbikes, among
other racing series.

The 2002 Grand Prix of Austria was surrounded by controversy
following an extreme Ferrari public relations faux pas.
Reubens Barrichello had truly dominated the entire race
weekend, and was definitely on his way to his second-ever F1
win.  In the closing laps of the race, teammate Michael
Schumacher (P2) began closing in on Barrichello, but the
assumption was that this move was to allow Ferrari's cars to
be close enough for a photo opportunity for its sponsors.
However, since Michael Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya
(Schumacher's closest expected competition) were at that
point very close in points in the Drivers' Championship,
Barrichello - who that week had signed a contract extension
as the NUMBER TWO TEAM DRIVER behind Michael Schumacher - was
ordered to pull aside in the final meters of the race to
allow his teammate to gain an extra four points in his lead
over Montoya (P1 awards 10 points; P2 awards 6 points).
While FIA could not do anything against the team or the
drivers for the team orders, the fans in the stands (and
myself watching live on television at 7AM in Arizona) were
FURIOUS.  Michael Schumacher having officially 'won' the race
was to take the top rung on the podium, but instead took the
second rung and pushed the 'true' winner Reubens Barrichello
to the top rung; the FIA took objection to this and
sanctioned the team and the drivers at a special hearing
later in the year.

F1 winners at A1-Ring: Jacques Villeneuve (1997), Mika
Hakkinen (1998 and 2000), Eddie Irvine (1999), David
Coulthard (2001), and Michael Schumacher (the official winner
in 2002 - see the note on the controversy above, as many
consider that Reubens Barrichello won the race).

See the official Web site (http://www.a1ring.at/) for more
information.  Unfortunately, it does not appear to have any
historical information on the circuit itself, nor can I find
any such information online.  Also, the official Web site is
entirely in German, a language I cannot read.


Anthony Noghes presented the concept of an automobile racing
event in the streets of Monte Carlo in the 1920s.  With the
support of Prince Louis II, it was realized that the natural
lay of the land provided a natural location for a superb
racetrack.  The first Grand Prix of Monaco was help April 14,
1929, with sixteen competitors.  Since then, only fourteen
years did the Grand Prix of Monaco not take place.

Many of the most famous F1 drivers have won the Grand Prix of
Monaco: Juan Manuel Fangio in 1950 and 1957; Stirling Moss in
1956, 1960, and 1961; Graham Hill in 1963-1965, 1968 and
1969; Jackie Stewart in 1966, 1971, and 1973; Niki Lauda in
1975 and 1976; Alain Prost in 1984-1986 and 1988; Ayrton
Senna in 1987 and 1989-1993; and Michael Schumacher in 1994,
1995, 1997, 1999, and 2001.  Due to the narrowness of the
circuit, the steep elevation changes, and the numerous tight
corners, the Grand Prix of Monte Carlo is one of the most
prestigious events an F1 driver can possibly win.

See the official Web site (http://www.monaco.mc/monaco/gprix)
for more information.


Located on the Ile Notre-Dame in Montreal, Quebec, Canada,
the circuit has hosted the Grand Prix of Canada since 1978.
The circuit is named for Gilles-Villeneuve, the first
Canadian F1 driver.  His first F1 victory was in 1978 at the
Canadian Grand Prix on the Ile Notre-Dame track.  However,
following his death during a practice session for the 1982
Grand Prix of Belgium, the City of Montreal Executive
Committee passed a resolution to rename the circuit in honor
of Gilles-Villeneuve.  Jacques Villeneuve, son of Gilles-
Villeneuve, now competes in F1 (for BAR in 2002), so the
Villeneuve name continues on in F1 racing.

Many people attempt to compare F1 cars with CART cars.
Therefore, it is perhaps not so surprising that in 2002, CART
raced at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve for the first time.  Based
upon the popularity of this first CART venture to the
circuit, CART will likely keep returning to this great race
venue for many years and decades to come.

F1 winners at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve: Gilles-Villeneuve
(1978), Alan Jones (1979 and 1980), Jacques Laffite (1981),
Nelson Piquet (1982, 1984 and 1991), Rene Arnoux (1983),
Michele Alboreto (1985), Ayrton Senna (1988 and 1990),
Thierry Boutsen (1989), Gerhard Berger (1992), Alain Prost
(1993), Michael Schumacher (1994, 1997, 1998, 2000, and
2002), Jean Alesi (1995), Damon Hill (1996), Mika Hakkinen
(1999), and Ralf Schumacher (2001).

The official Web site (http://www.grandprix.ca) has plenty of
good information - including very important circuit access
information, since cars cannot be taken to the island.


Originally 22.677 kilometers (14.173 miles) in length, the
Nurburgring first opened in 1927 (following two years of
construction) and is still going strong.  The opening events
featured motorcycles (June 18, 1927), with cars featured the
following day.  The 1939 German Grand Prix was the final race
at Nurburgring for quite some time due to the beginning of
World War II.  The circuit itself was damaged in the closing
months of the war, but racing returned to Nurburgring in
1947.  However, there were no races at Nurburgring in 1948,
as the circuit was being brought up to safety standards.

Nurburgring began hosting F1 events in 1951.  Estimates show
that 400,000 spectators came to the track for the 1954 F1
race.  In 1958, however, the F1 race saw the death of Peter
Collins as his Ferrari went out of control.

The 1968 world motorcycle championship at Nurburgring had a
strange stoppage: a forest fire.  The F1 Grand Prix later
that year had nearly impossible visibility due to intense
rain and fog.

In 1970, the Northern Loop of the circuit was called into
question after numerous accidents.  Improvements were made
for the following year, when 130,000 spectators witnessed
Jackie Stewart winning the F1 Grand Prix.  More improvements
were demanded in 1974 (first by motorcyclists, then by F1
drivers).  When Nikki Lauda was seriously injured in 1976,
the Northern Loop was decommissioned as an F1 venue.

A new, shorter circuit was then designed and built, opening
in 1984 at 4.542 kilometers (2.839 miles) in length.  Alan
Prost won that year's European Grand Prix.  In 1986, however,
the F1 race moved to Hockenheim.  1995 saw the return of F1
to Nurburgring, and the historic race venue has produced
excellent races ever since.

Some of the notable F1 winners at Nurburgring: Alberto Ascari
(1951 and 1952), Juan Manuel Fangio (1954-1956), Stirling
Moss (1961), Jim Clark (1965), Jack Brabham (1966), Jackie
Stewart (1968, 1971, and 1973), Alain Prost (1984), Michael
Schumacher (1995, 2000, and 2001), Jacques Villeneuve (1996
and 1997), Mika Hakkinen (1998), and Rubens Barrichello

See the official Web site (http://www.nuerburgring.de/) for
plenty more details about the Nurburgring.


The world-famous Silverstone circuit - often spoken of in the
same terms as Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Monza - has
hosted F1 racing since 1950.  This 5.110-kilometer (3.194-
mile) circuit is set at an airport site, and contains several
configurations.  The Silverstone International circuit (used
for the British TOCA series) shares much of the same pavement
as the Grand Prix circuit used for the annual F1 Grand Prix
of Great Britain; in fact, the pavement for the two circuits
even cross at approximately two-thirds of the way around the
International circuit.

During World War II, the Royal Air Force chose the site now
known as Silverstone for an airfield and a bomber-training
base.  Following the war, other circuits such as Donnington
Park and Brooklands could not be used for racing due to
having been converted for wartime uses.  Thus, in 1948, the
Silverstone site was used for its first race... with the
circuit marked by hay bales.  The circuit was redone in 1949
and assumed a configuration roughly equivalent to that in
current use.

F1 began in 1950, and held its first race at Silverstone.
Guiseppe Farina won the first-ever F1 race in an Alfa Romeo.
The British Racing Drivers' Club operated Silverstone until
2001, when current owner Octagon Motorsports took control of
the venue; this also ensures that the British Grand Prix will
be held at Silverstone for at least the next fifteen years.

The world's best F1 drivers have all placed themselves into
the Silverstone record books, including Manuel Fangio,
Stirling Moss, Mike Hawthorn, Jack Brabham, John Surtees, Jim
Clark, Graham Hill, Jackie Stewart, James Hunt, John Watson,
Niki Lauda, Alain Prost, Nigel Mansell, Ayrton Senna, Eddie
Irvine, Jacques Villeneuve, Mika Hakkinen, Michael
Schumacher, and David Coulthard.  The track record is held by
Michael Schumacher, at 1:24.475 with an average speed of
217.784KPH (136.115MPH).

Silverstone hosts far more than just F1: Grand Prix
motorcycles, SuperBikes, Karts, FIA GTs, European Le Mans,
RallySprint, stages of the Rally of Great Britain, British
Touring Car Championship, and British Formula 3 and GT.

The official Web site is actually the site for Octagon
Motorsports (http://www.octagonmotorsports.com/), which owns
and operates Silverstone, as well as Snetterton, Cadwell
Park, Brands Hatch, and Oulton Park.


Characterized by its three parallel straightaways (which can
be aurally difficult for drivers while on the middle
straightaway), Nevers Magny-Cours has hosted F1 events since
1991.  The 4.226-kilometer (2.641-mile) circuit is also used
for Motorbikes Championship, FIA GT Championship, Formula
Renault 2000 Eurocup, FIA Sportcar Championship, Formula
Nissan, historical races, and various endurance races.

F1 winners at Nevers Magny-Cours: Nigel Mansell (1991 and
1992), Alain Prost (1993), Michael Schumacher (1994, 1995,
1997, 1998, 2001, and 2002), Damon Hill (1996), Heinz-Harald
Frentzen (1999), and David Coulthard (2000).

Visit the official Web site (http://www.magnycours.com/) for
more information.  Unfortunately, the site does not include
any circuit history in either the French- or English-language
versions of the site.

This information on the 1999 F1 race at Magny-Cours is
provided by ViperMask, one of the biggest F1 fans I have ever
met.  It is edited only for formatting purposes.

   As for Magny-Cours, Heinz Harald Frentzen's win was a
   very special one.  He made a BEAUTIFUL drive in the
   wet, in the Jordan Mugen-Honda.  It was one of the
   races that made HHF into a superstar driver AND the
   Driver of the Year in 1999.


The Hockenheim circuit was an EXCELLENT and very high-speed
race venue until 2002, when the circuit was redesigned and
severely shortened while accommodations were added to bring
in even more spectators than before.  The former Hockenheim
configuration ran almost entirely through the German forest.
The circuit was designed in 1932, and hosts F1 and many other
forms of motorsport.

Notable F1 winners at Hockenheim: Niki Lauda (1977), Mario
Andretti (1978),  (1981, 1986, and 1987), Alain Prost (1984,
1993), Ayrton Senna (1988-1990), Nigel Mansell (1991 and
1992), Michael Schumacher (1995, 2002), and Mika Hakkinen

The official Web site (http://www.hockenheimring.de/) is
unfortunately only available in German - which is a language
I cannot read :-(


Located 19.2 kilometers (12 miles) northeast of Budapest, the
3.946-kilometer (2.466-mile) Hungaroring circuit has been
used for F1 racing since 1986, and represented the first
foray of F1 racing into the Eastern Block (during the Cold
War era).

F1 winners at Hungaroring include Nelson Piquet (1986 and
1987), Ayrton Senna (1988, 1991, and 1992), Nigel Mansell
(1989), Thierry Boutsen (1990), Damon Hill (1993 and 1995),
Michael Schumacher (1994, 1998, and 2001), Jacques Villeneuve
(1996 and 1997), Mika Hakkinen (1999 and 2000), and Reubens
Barrichello (2002).

The official Web site (http://www.hungaroring.hu/)
unfortunately does not include a circuit history.


The Spa-Francorchamps circuit is one of the most scenic race
venues in all of F1 racing (especially now that the
Hockenheim circuit in Germany has been practically destroyed
in its new, far shorter configuration); races here are also
as much characterized by the often-changing weather as by the
challenging circuit itself.  The Spa-Francorchamps venue has
been as long as 14.038 kilometers (8.774 miles) in length
(from 1950 to 1956), but has been greatly shortened now to
6.928 kilometers (4.330 miles) in length.  This is a tricky
circuit, categorized primarily by the tight La Source hairpin
just beyond the Start/Finish Line, and the long, snaking,
steep, uphill climb up Eau Rouge to the tree-lined Kemmel
Straight (the highest area of the circuit).

The Spa-Francorchamps circuit hosts numerous forms of
motorsport, including F1, Karting, and motorbikes.  There are
also two driving schools based at Spa-Francorchamps: Peugeot
Driving School EPMA and RACB Driving school.

Conceived in 1920, the circuit was ready for racing in August
1921... but there was no race, as only one competitor had
registered :-(   Three years later, Spa-Francorchamps hosted
its first annual 24 Hours of Francorchamps (24 Hours of Spa),
an endurance race begun only one year following the inaugural
24 Hours of Le Mans.  Until World War II, the major events
held at the circuit were the motorcycle grand prix races, the
Belgian Grand Prix, and the 24 Hours of Francorchamps.

However, by the 1970s, drivers were sincerely concerned about
safety along the lengthy Spa-Francorchamps circuit.  After
numerous propositions, a shorter circuit was created, and the
7-kilomter circuit was inaugurated in 1979.  Fortunately, the
new circuit kept the main characteristics of its massive
former self and also sported many safety improvements.  With
the shorter, safer circuit, the F1 Grand Prix of Belgium was
able to return to Spa-Francorchamps.  The current track
record was set by Michael Schumacher at 1:43.726 (241.837KMH,
or 151.148MPH) in 2002.

In one of the most spectacular passes in recent F1 history,
the 2000 Grand Prix of Belgium hinged upon Mika Salo drafting
behind Michael Schumacher to make a pass for the race lead at
the end of Kemmel Straight, using a third car as a pick on
entering Malmedy-Les Combes at the highest point of the Spa-
Francorchamps circuit.

Notable F1 winners at Spa-Francorchamps: Juan Manuel Fangio
(1950, 1954, and 1955), Alberto Ascari (1952 and 1953), Jack
Brabham (1960), Jim Clark (1962-1965), Emerson Fittipaldi
(1972), Alain Prost (1983 and 1987), Ayrton Senna (1985, and
1988-1991), Nigel Mansell (1986), Michael Schumacher (1992,
1995-1997, and 2001-2002), and Mika Hakkinen (2000).

Please visit the official Web site (http://www.spa-
francorchamps.be/) for a lot of excellent information on the
Spa-Francorchamps circuit and its many events and driving


Originally opened in 1922 to commemorate the twenty-fifth
anniversary of the Milan Automobile Club, the Monza circuit
(Autodromo Nazionale Monza), near Milan, Italy, has been the
site of more F1 grand prix events than any other.  The Monza
circuit has seen numerous configurations, including the
famous banked section from 1955 to 1961.

Monza has always been an incredibly fast race venue... and
with this speed comes even greater danger.  Phil Hill's 1961
race victory (his second consecutive win at Monza) was
severely overshadowed by a collision between Jim Clark and
Wolfgang von Trips which took the lives of the latter driver
and over one dozen spectators.  A 1970 mechanical failure
during Qualifying killed Jochen Rindt, so one may not be
surprised that chicanes, guard rails, and reinforced fencing
were added beginning in 1972 as an attempt to slow the cars
and make Monza's events safer for all involved; however, the
chicanes specifically were really just makeshift safety
measures due to the increasing performance in virtually all
realms of motorsport.  In more recent years, the opening lap
of the 2000 Grand Prix of Italy was seriously marred by the
death of a trackside race marshal due to all the flying
debris at the Roggia Chicane (the second chicane of the
circuit).  While there were no dangerous incidents at the
2001 Grand Prix of Italy, that particular event happened to
be scheduled for the first weekend following the world-
shocking terrorist attacks on the United States (September
11, 2001) AND the near-fatal accident at a new race venue in
Germany (the previous afternoon) which forced the amputation
of the legs of CART driver Alex Zanardi; these events cast a
dark shadow over the race itself as well as the entire Grand
Prix weekend.

On a far more positive note, Williams driver Juan Pablo
Montoya - truly making his first great impact upon the F1
world following several years of astounding success in CART -
broke Keke Rosberg's twenty-seven-year record for the fastest
ever F1 qualifying lap.  Rosberg's then record-setting lap
was 259.005KPH (161.878MPH) set at Silverstone; Montoya's new
record-setting lap was 259.827KPH (162.392MPH).  What makes
Montoya's achievement even more impressive is that Michelin-
shod F1 vehicles (led by Williams and McLaren) have generally
not been able to compete with Bridgestone-shod cars (led by

The Monza circuit has seen all sorts of motorsport events,
including motorcycles and touring cars, and currently is
5.736 kilometers (3.585 miles) in length.  A recent Italian
telefilm on the life of Enzzo Ferrari exclusively used the
Monza circuit for its racing shots using time-appropriate

Notable F1 winners at Monza: Alberto Ascari (1951 and 1952),
Juan Manuel Fangio (1953-1955), Stirling Moss (1956 and
1957), Stirling Moss (1959), Jim Clark (1963), Jackie Stewart
(1965 and 1969), Emerson Fittipaldi (1972), Mario Andretti
(1977), Niki Lauda (1978 and 1984), Alain Prost (1981, 1985,
and 1989), Nelson Piquet (1983, 1986, and 1987), Ayrton Senna
(1990 and 1992), Michael Schumacher (1996, 1998, 2000, and
2002), and Juan Pablo Montoya (2001).

The official Web site of Autodromo Nazionale Monza
(http://www.monzanet.it/) has plenty of great information,
including a large track map of Monza's various configurations
and plenty of images of racing action on Monza's banked


Essentially a 'stadium circuit' located at Indianapolis Motor
Speedway, the Indianapolis Grand Prix circuit is the newest
race venue in F1, first used in its current incarnation in
2000.  This also marks the return of F1 racing to the United
States, which had been absent since 1991 (using a temporary
street circuit in downtown Phoenix, Arizona).  The initial
4.192-kilometer (2.620-mile) US Grand Prix was won by Michael
Schumacher in 2000, followed by Mika Hakkinen (in his final
race win before sabbatical/retirement) in 2001.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway was purchased in 1945 by Tony
Hulman (the namesake of Hulman Blvd., which connects Turn 7
and Turn 8 of the Grand Prix circuit) and restored to use
after the speedway had fallen into disuse because of World
War II.  In 1950-1960, the Indianapolis 500 also awarded
points for the F1 World Championship; winners in this era
include Johnnie Parsons, Bill Vukovich, and Jim Rathmann.

Tony George, the President of the Indianapolis Motor
Speedway, was almost single-handedly responsible for bringing
F1 racing back to the United States.  The Indianapolis Motor
Speedway had to be brought up to standard in order to host
the United States Grand Prix, including a new Paddock area
which would allow cars to exit from the garage directly onto
Pit Lane.  Also, in a MAJOR concession to the traditions of
F1 racing, the 2000 USGP marked the very first time that a
race had been run in REVERSE (clockwise) at Indianapolis
Motor Speedway.

The 2001 Grand Prix of the United States was the first major
auto racing event on American soil following the terrorist
attacks on America just two weeks before.  FIA and USGP
organizers truly went out of their way to provide
entertainment, soothing words, and patriotic moments for the
thousands of spectators at a time when the nation and the
world were still in shock, grief, and mourning at the
terrorist events.

Winners of the Indianapolis 500 during its quasi-F1 era
(1950-1960): Johnnie Parsons (1950), Lee Wallard (1951), Troy
Ruttman (1952), Bill Vukovich (81953 and 1954), Bob Sweikert
(1955), Pat Flaherty (1956), Sam Hanks (1957), Jimmy Bryan
(1958), Rodger Ward (1959), and Jim Rathmann (1960).

Winners of the United States Grand Prix at Indianapolis in
the modern era: Michael Schumacher (2000), and Mika Hakkinen

Visit the official Web site (http://www.usgpindy.com/).


In operation since at least 1962 and the host of F1 races
since 1987, Suzuka Circuit is the host of many forms of
motorsport - including F1 and other Formula series, and
motorbikes (including MotoGP) - as well as several racing
schools.  Suzuka comprises two different circuits: the 5.821-
kilometer (3.638-mile) International Racing Course (used for
F1 events) and the 1.264-kilometer (0.790-mile) Southern
Course (which itself contains numerous configurations).

F1 winners at Suzuka: Gerhard Berger (1987 and 1991), Ayrton
Senna (1988), Alessandro Nannini (1989), Nelson Piquet
(1990), Riccardo Patrese (1992), Ayrton Senna (1993), Damon
Hill (1994 and 1996), Michael Schumacher (1995, 1997, and
2000-2002), and Mika Hakkinen (1998 and 1999).

Unfortunately, the official Web site
(http://www.suzukacircuit.co.jp/) is almost exclusively in
Japanese. Many section titles are also given in English (such
as Event Calendar, Group Enjoy!, and Circuit Queen), but the
only truly-English area is a single page with downloadable
files of information for buying tickets to the next Grand
Prix of Japan.


This section contains the diagrams referred to earlier in the

Ascari Chicane (at Monza):

Bus Stop Chicane (Variant I - Wide Chicane):
   *******************           *******************
                      *         *

Bus Stop Chicane (Variant II - Narrow Chicane):
   *******************           *******************

Decreasing-radius Corner:

Hairpin Corner:

Increasing-radius Corner:


Quick-flicks (Variant I - Wide Chicane):

Quick-flicks (Variant II - Narrow Chicane):

Sample Circuit Using Some of the Above Corner Types Combined:
    ******|******       *****
   *      |->    *     *     *
    *          **   ***     *
     *        *   **        *
    *         *  *    *     *
   *         *  *    * *     ********
   *          **    *   *            *
   *               *     ************
    *******       *

Standard Corner:


Virtual Bus Stop Chicane:
                     Car #1   ->->->->->->   Car #3
   Player Path: ->->->->->->->   Car #2   ->->->->->->->


The official FIA Web site (http://www.fia.com/) has a lot of
good information pertaining to F1 racing, including the
current season's race schedule, rules and regulations, and
links to the official Web sites of most of the courses used.
The FIA Web site is available in both French and English.


For questions, rants, raves, comments of appreciation, etc.,
or to be added to my e-mail list for updates to this driving
guide, please contact me at: [email protected]; also, if
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