There’s one major benefit which could come from F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone’s plans to have a Formula One Grand Prix in New York by 2012.
We could finally see the end of the frankly rubbish New York circuit in Forza Motorsport 3
The cabs of Times Square image by Joiseyshowaa on Flickr (CC Licence)
Ecclestone has said that the race would be in front of Manhattan, in New Jersey, with the skyscrapers in the background. And whilst an accurate representation of the street circuit will probably only be available in a licensed Formula One game for 2012/2013, it might finally inspire Turn 10 to remove one of the worst circuits in the game.
I doubt there’s anyone in massive disagreement with me, but just in case, here’s some justification for why New York is a painful circuit to race on.
In theory, a simple track should enable close racing without anyone launching themselves into the scenery, as evenly matched cars battle side-by-side down the straights, and those with a speed advantage lose out to cars with better cornering capabilities.
The problem is that has never happened. Too many straights and two right angle bends which effectively merge into one long single-apex curve means that speed will always win out – and the extremely tight circle onto the start finish straight when going the normal anti-clockwise route means it’s extremely easy to block and baulk a car with better corner speed.
Plus a start-finish straight into a concrete-lined right angle corner just means that the inevitable pile-up scatters cars all over the place – leaving most out of contention early on.
And in Forza 3, what did they do?
They added some ridiculous chicanes on the straights, intended to balance things out, but placed in such a way that they wreck any flow, they’re hard to spot in shadows from the skyscrapers, and far too easy to clip, particularly when overtaking.
Essentially it’s just another place where any actual racing results in a pile-up, and just rewards an aggressive driver with no damage, or wrecks everyone’s race if damage is switched on.
We can only hope that when real world Formula One comes to New York they’ think a little more about creating a more flowing track which allows races to last longer than one corner.