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We'll all be able to race around the new Saudi Arabi street circuit in F1 2021, but until then, we have had our first look at a hotlap around the new Saudi Arabia track.
Just a few days ago Formula 1 released some footage of their brand new Saudi Arabi street circuit. The hotlap was released by Formula and Tilka, the company behind the track design. This wasn’t captured in the official F1 2021 game, instead, it looks like another third party simulator.
If you want to jump straight in and watch the first look hotlap around the Saudi Arabia circuit, you can do so below.
The Saudi Arabia grand prix is currently set to be held in Jeddah on the 5th December, and it’ll be the first time Formula 1 has travelled to Saudi Arabia.
The track itself has been designed by Tilke GmbH, the company responsible for some of the recent modern F1 circuits nicknamed the “Tilkedromes”.
This new track in particular will break records for being without a doubt the fastest street circuit in history. The track layout itself consists of a reasonably narrow circuit which weaves through the streets of Saudi Arabia.
There are 27 corners in total, with many of those being taken flat out in an F1 car. The track comes in at a cool 6.17km, and boasts an average speed of over 250km/h.
Ross Brawn and Tilke both hope that this new track will be a fast flowing, and exciting place to watch an F1 car drive. However the fast flowing nature and close walls do at first glance make it look like overtaking will be hard.
With the Vietnam circuit never being raced at in 2020, and being dropped from the calendar in 2021. The new Saudi Arabia circuit does include a few corners and sections of track which are very reminiscent of the Hanoi circuit, which was another Tilka designed circuit.
Like a few of the circuits in the Middle East and Asia, the Saudi Arabia track is setup to be run in the evening and under floodlights. This should add to the spectacle. And the three proposed DRS zones should aid towards some overtaking despite the layout not presenting any obvious overtaking zones.
It’s fair to say this latest Tilkedrome hasn’t had the best reception from fans of the sport. If you scroll through some of the comments on the onboard video above, you’ll see an overwhelming worry about the lack of overtaking opportunities.
This is a valid concern as from the onboard video of the Jeddah circuit, there doesn’t appear to be any heavy braking zones. The few corners which are slower all seem to have a rather fast entry which could limit the ability for a driver to send a move down the inside.
The skinny nature of the track combined with the high average speed and lack of run off area all add to the high chance of a safety car throughout the race. This could add some excitement in terms of pit strategies and seeing cars out of position as they re-join the track.
Although while we’ll have to wait until late in the year before we actually see cars on track before we make our final judgement.
As Codemasters strive to make their F1 games as close to the real sport as possible, it is almost a certainty that Saudi Arabia will be drive-able in F1 2021.
In last year’s game, F1 2020, we saw both the Vietnam and Zandvoort circuit, even though neither of these circuits were actually raced in real life. Check back for an update as soon as we have one for the F1 2021 game, and in the mean time check out everything we currently know about the F1 2021 game.