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More thrills at Singapore Grand Prix

SINGAPORE — The eighth edition of Formula 1’s original night race will have more overtaking opportunities with the widening of the tightest turn on the Marina Bay Street Circuit.

Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix 2014 shooting from Swissotel The Stamford,Singapore on Sept 19, 2014. TODAY file photo

Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix 2014 shooting from Swissotel The Stamford,Singapore on Sept 19, 2014. TODAY file photo

SINGAPORE — The eighth edition of Formula 1’s original night race will have more overtaking opportunities with the widening of the tightest turn on the Marina Bay Street Circuit.

Race promoter Singapore GP said today (July 28) that ahead of the Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix from Sept 18 to 20, modifications to the alignment of the track between Turns 11 and 13 will be made. Among the changes in front of the Singapore Cricket Club, drivers will enter Anderson Bridge on the left lane instead of right in previous years, before accelerating at 200kmh towards the sharpest turn on the 5.065km circuit.

The hairpin or Turn 13 at the apex of Fullerton Road and Esplanade Drive has also been widened by a metre to increase the possibility of overtaking at this part of the track.

Singapore veteran racer Ringo Chong said the changes will challenge the technical abilities of drivers, as although passing is possible there, it is difficult and only the most skilful drivers make the attempt.

“I’ve overtaken other drivers there and have been overtaken also,” said the 49-year-old, who will be competing at the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia, one of two support races for the Formula 1 championships.

“The modified section is going to be slower and entering the Anderson Bridge on the left side would make entry into Turn 13 much sharper. More steering angles mean more chances to make mistakes and overtaking before the hairpin is always a pretty tight squeeze for saloon cars.”

The changes, said Singapore GP, come on the back of a number of key enhancements to the city’s Civic District that will tie in with the Republic’s 50th anniversary.

The enhancement works by the Urban Redevelopment Authority will integrate the areas at Esplanade Park and Empress Place to form a new arts, culture and lifestyle precinct that includes the Asian Civilisation Museum, Victoria Theatre and Concert Hall, and the National Gallery.

Added Singapore GP deputy chairman Colin Syn: “It’s a win-win situation that the development of the new arts, culture and lifestyle precinct will provide an upgraded experience, but also potentially make for closer racing at this year’s Singapore Grand Prix.”

 

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story misspelt racer Ringo Chong's name. We are sorry for the error.

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