Australian GP circuit set for future tweaks
Organisers of the Australian Grand Prix look set to proceed with a full resurfacing of the Albert Park track in Melbourne. Last weekend for the 2019 season opener, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel urged against the resurfacing, saying the bumps are part of the character of the venue.
Vettel struggled to find balance in his Ferrari, and highlighted the circuit’s bumpy nature as a key reason after qualifying seven tenths down on Mercedes duo Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.
However, he warned against making alterations, saying: “I haven’t got the balance yet which maybe I would like to have, especially in lower speed, and not the confidence and trust which again, around here, can make a big difference because it’s a bumpy track and I hope they don’t resurface it because it’s part of the character of this track.”
Hamilton echoed his rival’s sentiments: “I like the track the way it is. I think it’s a great circuit because there are not particularly massive run-off areas.
“If you put a wheel wrong, it generally does bite you which is great and how it should be. The bumps are part of the character of what Melbourne is so if you were to iron those out it would lose a lot of… you know, it does make it trickier for us but that’s a part of it, you need that.”
However, it appears a new track surface could come in as well as other “tweaks” to the circuit that may be made, amid claims overtaking is too difficult at Albert Park.
“We will have to get the report back from [acting race director] Michael Masi, but I think we will be resurfacing in the next year or two,” Australian Grand Prix Corporation chief Andrew Westacott told The Age.
“As the cars keep evolving we will do what we can to evolve the circuit.”
The tweaks could involve changes to the camber, the width and the entry and exit of some corners.
“Ross Brawn will also be consulted but no call will be made for six or nine months,” said Westacott.