Max Verstappen gets some taste of the revamped Spa-Framcorchamps F1 circuit in a new special video from Red Bull.
Last years Grand Prix is remembered for so many wrong reasons due to the downpours that overshadowed the weekend. As is well known, Verstappen “won” the race. 80 million euro has been spent on the overhaul of the venue, aimed at improving safety.
Some of the changes will make little difference to the track, there will need to be some readjustment for areas that have been resurfaced and revisions to gravel traps. Earlier this year with the changes not fully complete, Red Bull and Verstappen took to the track in Red-Bull simulator, however, the car he was driving was an iconic car from times past, the Red Bull RB7 from the 2011 season.
It is unusual for teams to run F1 cars, even historic ones, at current venues, but doing so is allowed in the rules. The rules state that teams are free to test whenever they choose, although they must run on show tyres prepared by Pirelli and the FIA must be notified of the intent. In this instance Red Bull did advise the governing body so everything is legit.
However, the use of an old Grand Prix car on new tyres will not assist Red Bull and Verstappen that much, every little bit of assistance helps. In this instance they will have seen the resurfacing of the track and the new changes made so it will surely be a plus.
The World Champion himself loves the place as do all the drivers. He does though have a special affinity with the track. “I love Spa-Francorchamps, it is one of my favourite tracks on the calendar,” said Verstappen. “I was born in Belgium, so it’s always a special feeling coming back here. Last year’s Belgian GP was the wettest conditions I have ever driven in.
“I wanted to prep properly, and my engineers made it a real challenge. The gaming approach was really fun. Asphalt, off-road, day, night, being chased by a helicopter… I’m ready for you, Belgium. We had to fit the RB7 with special wheels to be able to have some grip the surface.
“There was dust everywhere and we had to wait for it to settle between every take. The off-road and helicopter chase parts were filmed in Lommel, not that far from where I grew up. Going that fast in the middle of the night – surrounded by darkness with a helicopter looming over my shoulder – really was special,” summed up Verstappen.
Here’s photos and video:
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