by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 31
created by Tilke GmbH. “Street tracks are completely different, of course, because you are not free to design, you have to see where the streets are, where the facilities are, but then of course it’s a lot of detail work. “OK, how much is my involvement? We were there [in Valencia] together with Bernie Ecclestone, and he chose more or less the site. Then we discussed with him and he has a lot of experience in racing of course, and he was choosing together the streets which we used. And then we started to go into detail.” With Tilke’s circuits comprising over half the current F1 grid (and with Donington, India and Abu Dhabi all in the pipeline) his responsibility to the future of F1 is huge. But does he have to consider the technical regulations at play in the sport when creating the tracks in order to create overtaking spots? “In terms of overtaking, we think a lot about how to create parts or corners where cars are able to overtake. Also for me it is very important that the corners after the start do not allow the field to get stretched out from each other. We create sometimes some corners after the first or second corner to bring the field together. “You can make what you want, but if the slower car is behind the faster car, you won’t get overtaking. But if something happens then it gets interesting.” Despite public conception, Tilke also confirms there is no such thing as a typical ‘Tilke’ track. “It depends on the aim. You have different types of circuit. If you make a motorcycle circuit, if you make a Formula 1 circuit, if you make a circuit at lower level for Touring Cars or these things or maybe a testing circuit or an event circuit. There are so many different kinds of circuits. But for Formula 1 circuits, it’s good when you have made it possible for good, interesting, challenging races. “The facilities are also very important because the teams have to work, the spectators have to see and have fun, the media and all the parties have to feel good at the circuit and the facilities have to make the organisation work. This is also very important. It is also very important to have everyone in one building. To have F1, motorcycle and everything in one building, it’s not too easy to bring everything together. “You also have to keep the characteristic of the country. If you think especially about Formula 1, the circuit is a sign to the world of the country and they want to show where you are, give a landmark, something exciting from the buildings and the architecture.” It’s not just racing circuits, of course. Tilke’s 28 work extends to hotels, airports, conference halls … indeed, from the look of the designs on his company’s website, it’s a shame that some of the glorious buildings he has designed to sit alongside the F1 tracks he has created are yet to be built. But despite the pressure, and the obvious polarisation of opinion which a man in his position courts, how does he feel to have such a responsibility? Typical of the man, he shuns the very notion that he has any influence at all over the manner in which Formula 1 is played out, regardless of his impact on the circuits on which it races: “We have no influence where Formula 1 goes, but we have a little influence how it looks in the end. But it’s not down only to us. It’s at the end a result of a lot of discussing and the client has to be satisfied with this. If it is Formula 1 then Bernie Ecclestone brings his experience, and there are a lot of influences. It’s a team effort. “But it’s fun. I like it.” Forward planning: Tilke GmbH has concepts going in places like Rio, below, and Argon, Spain, above. And it doesn’t stop at race tracks – hotels are part of the service too, like this example from Bahrain, far right.