Most F1 circuits have names for the corners and some even for the straights. These make it easy for the fan to recognise the circuit, but also remember the action that took place there. The following list of names from circuits used for F1 will be recognisable to many, and no doubt you will be able to picture what that piece of tarmac looks like:
Courbe de Signes;
Pangkor Laut Chicane;
The trend for many recent circuits has just been to number the corners, now with the possible exception of Turn 8 in Istanbul, I cannot think of a single corner that I associate with its number. If they had names it would be so much easier. Perhaps it is this that makes modern Tilke designed circuits so forgettable?
Of the recent circuits only Sepang appears to have been given corner names. Yet, in the UK broadcasts at least, they are never used. So that is why the Pangkor Laut Chicane may not be immediately familiar to you, although the unique shape of the opening two corners on the circuit are instantly recognisable.
I am disappointed that the Circuit of the Americas doesn’t yet have corner names, and hope that in time significant parts of the circuit are given appropriate nomenclature. After all there are many worthy American drivers or team owners who deserve to be recognised in this way if there aren’t local place names that would be more appropriate. Naming the features of the circuit helps to give it character, every race track in the world has a turn 1 but most choose to call it something else. No one talks about turn 3 at Spa-Francorchamps, but a lot talk about Eau Rouge.
So what do you think, should circuits have names for the features (requiring commentators to learn what they are) or are simple numbers enough to identify the locations?