Azad Rahimov, Azerbaijan’s Minister of Youth and Sport, along with F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone announced the European Grand Prix for 2016 at a press event in Baku, Azerbaijan on Tuesday. According to the official F1 website:

Bernie Ecclestone:

“Azerbaijan is the latest addition to the Formula One calendar and I am pleased to see they have designed an innovative new street circuit that will definitely help to create a world class event when we race there in 2016.”

Azad Rahimov:

“This is a very exciting milestone for everybody involved in the Baku European Grand Prix and I would like to thank Mr Ecclestone for taking the time out of his very busy schedule to come and help us unveil the newest F1 circuit to join the world’s most exciting sport.”

The street circuit was designed by long-time F1 track designer, Herman Tilke who was quoted on the F1 website:

Hermann Tilke, CEO Tilke Engineering:

“I am absolutely thrilled about the Baku European Grand Prix project and delighted we can now unveil the track design. We have created a challenging street circuit, in terms of engineering and design, and one that thrives on Baku’s very attractive urban atmosphere and its great combination of history and 21st century style. The historic city centre, the beautiful seaside promenade and the impressive government house all combine to provide the perfect backdrop for a spectacular new track.

“Obviously street circuits present a number of challenges, in terms of circuit design, but we have been able to incorporate some unique features that will provide the teams and fans with fascinating racing. For example, there will be an extremely narrow uphill section at the old town wall that will reward pinpoint accuracy and courage, and we have an acceleration section of almost 2.2 kilometres along the promenade which will see the cars running flat out at very high top speeds – something that will create an incredible spectacle for the race fans on track and the viewers at home.”

All around great guy and F1 fan, Keith at F1 Fanatic, even took a pen to a map and drew out the street circuit layout for everyone to see here. Nice job Keith! Given that in promoting the event, F1 hasn’t given any pictures or maps for us to share with you. The enterprising and terrific Keith completed the legwork and did the heavy lifting for them. Thanks mate.

Hat Tip: F1.com and Keith at F1 Fanatic

 

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The Captain
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The Captain

What the hell is going on with that track?… What the hell is going on with any of this?

This is one of those Bernie things that’s not really going to happen right?

mini696
Member
mini696

Wait… It’s not April 1st.

meine
Member
meine

Riiiigght…..

Nope, nothing to say.

Tom Firth
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Tom Firth

The FIA states for new circuits a 12m width minimum for new tracks, although exceptions exist such as Anderson Bridge in Singapore, exactly what extremely narrow and uphill represents, we will have to see.

No straight lower than 2km’s in length is also an obstacle, this layout is going to need some waivers therefore to be compliant, I’m sure it will get them fine, it’s just an interesting note.

I do feel this will end up joining for a few years and that’s all like the European Grand Prix at Valencia, South Korea, India , Turkey etc etc, we will see ….

Tom Firth
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Tom Firth

Although the 2.2km straight, when the FIA won’t even allow Le Sarthe to be beyond 2km’s without chicanes in place to break it up, I have serious doubts on that one, more than the width.

Tom Firth
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Tom Firth

*La Sarthe (damn autocorrect)

John The Race Fan (@JohnTheRaceFan)
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John The Race Fan (@JohnTheRaceFan)

I’m no Hermann Tilke, but here are my thoughts upon seeing the layout and comparing it to imagery from Google Earth: The hexagonal section should go around the roundabout for a low-speed corner with a wide portion of tarmac to create a passing opportunity for those drivers with sufficient attachments, especially with the wider run-off exiting that corner. The long straight along the waterfront with the high-speed flowing bends toward the end (assuming they run clockwise, as usual) looks like fun, both to watch and to drive. There’s a point where the race will run both directions on a wide… Read more »

PM
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PM

I don’t want to judge the circuit before it has been raced on, but it looks like another bore. Narrow track and 90 degree corners doesn’t bode well for racing. At least they could have thrown in a tight left hander before the straight to promote overtaking.

Sod's Law
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Sod's Law

Much better than New York… Much better.