Paul Ricard to modify pit entry ahead of 2019 F1 race
Circuit Paul Ricard, home of Formula 1's French Grand Prix, has undergone a partial resurfacing, while the pit lane entry is to be modified prior to this year’s event.
Formula 1 returned to France last season after a 10-year absence, with Paul Ricard hosting a Grand Prix for the first time since 1990.
Formula 1 used the full 5.8km circuit, featuring the North Chicane along the Mistral Straight, as opposed to the shorter layout used in the late 1980s.
The circuit layout has not been altered for the second year of its comeback but several corners have undergone a resurfacing over the winter.
The pit lane entry, though, is to be modified, with officials hoping the work will be completed in March, having received approval from the FIA last week, a spokesperson confirmed to Motorsport Week.
For the 2018 return the pit entry was located towards the start of the pit straight, shortly after the exit of the final corner, the Virage du Pont.
This meant drivers had to negotiate a right-hand bend while entering the pit lane before turning left, due to the relatively wide strip of grass that separates the pit wall from the pit lane.
Drivers raised concerns after Friday's practice sessions in 2018 that the left-hand kink could have provided a danger to Mercedes' crew, due to their pit box being located on the outside of the left-hand kink.
The speed limit in the pits was reduced from 80km/h to 60km/h for the remainder of the weekend, following the concerns raised, and no incident was reported.
But for this year the venue has reacted and a new pit lane entry is to be constructed prior to the Virage du Pont.
This year’s French Grand Prix is to take place from June 21 to 23.