Hermann Tilke: Boring Or Restricted?

Daniel LamCorrespondent IOctober 9, 2008

Formula One has added many new tracks to its calendar over the years. Most modern tracks on the calender have two things in common: they're designed by Hermann Tilke, and they get criticised by F1 fans and commentators for being dull and unchallenging.

Nine times out of ten, the blame goes to Tilke, but are most of his circuits being compromised on spectacle by the regulations?

Current F1 track design rules limit the amount of corner banking to just 10 degrees and prohibits other interesting features (such as adverse camber).

Is this one of the main factors resulting in boring tracks on the Formula 1 calender?

Well, it limits designs to long straights heading into tight hairpins and tight corners which switch back on themselves, with little camber or gradient. This is basically what we see with new track designs.

These are the main attributes we see on modern Formula 1 circuits designed by Tilke, whether they be Sepang or Istanbul (which have earned modest praise), Bahrain or Valencia (which have attracted the most criticism).

Is the problem a lack of imagination from Tilke or is he restricted by regulations?

If it was a lack of imagination, Formula 1 would be better off with a four year old with Crayola crayons than Mr. Tilke and his circuit design team.