Nashville circuit designer Tony Cotman has revealed preparations for IndyCar’s inaugural Music City Grand Prix are well underway.
The 2.17-mile street circuit is set to take place on August 6-8 in downtown Nashville, where drivers will race across the Korean Veterans Memorial Bridge and speed past Nissan Stadium, home of NFL’s Tennessee Titans.
Cotman has revealed the circuit organisers are linking up with Swiss construction company Geobrugg to help provide debris fence panels and concrete barriers which will meet the latest FIA approved standards.
“The first corner is quite wide, and I can easily see them running five or six-wide, just because there is room there to do it,” said Cotman.
“We’ve just started pouring the barriers in the new year and now product from Geobrugg is arriving every two weeks, so it’s really just about getting organised.
“We’ve seen their products around the world, and it has become more and more of a leader but from a US perspective using this barrier and panel system will be a first.
“We feel we’ve got the absolute best available safety system out there that we are going to use – we’re quite bullish about that.
“Any time IndyCar runs near water there is always rescue to consider in case anything should happen,” continued Cotman. “But the bridge is relatively wide; we’ll run a 12-meter track width in each direction.”
Extra attention has been paid to the bridge section with 650 of the 2150 concrete barriers being placed on this stretch alone. Even with so many barriers in place across the span, the plan is to include ample room for safety crews as well as a generous racing surface in both directions.
Much of the production of the barriers is set to be done on-site, with installations set to take place roughly three weeks ahead of the event in mid-July.
Jochen Braunwarth, Geobrugg’s Director of Motorsport Solutions, added: “It’s the first street circuit installation of the most current FIA safety standard in the US.
“We will be overseeing the production, training and quality control standards of the barriers and will perform the required training for the assemble of the debris fence panels.”
Organisers are expected a large attendance at the inaugural event should local Covid-19 restrictions permit, with VIP tickets having already been sold out.