Verstappen and Hamilton in agreement on Losail’s new kerbs

The kerbs at the 2023 Qatar GP circuit have caused some concern

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Both Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton share similar views on the kerbs used at the Losail International Circuit.

The Losail International Circuit opened in 2004 and was built primarily for the MotoGP championship, hosting over 20 Qatar Motorcycle Grand Prix without an on-track hitch. However, since gaining a Formula 1 Grand Prix in 2021, the circuit’s kerbs have been a source of concern due to their height.

“Yeah, it’s always tough,” Verstappen told the press. “I do think these curves are a little bit better. I don’t think people who actually went wide gained time.

“It’s just a bit annoying. Because if you go a little bit wider, you damage your floor potentially, and you lose time. Why don’t we see track limits [at], for example, Suzuka? 

“It’s because if you go off, there’s immediate gravel. I would always prefer to see that kind of style of racing, but some places we share with bikes, and they like a bit more runoff.

“We always have to try and find a compromise, but sometimes it hurts them, sometimes it hurts us a little bit more in terms of these kinds of things.”

LUSAIL CITY, QATAR – OCTOBER 06: Sergio Perez of Mexico driving the (11) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB19 on track during practice ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Qatar at Lusail International Circuit on October 06, 2023 in Lusail City, Qatar. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool // SI202310061329 // Usage for editorial use only //

MotoGP and F1 need to find a compromise

Currently, three venues, the Red Bull Ring, Losail International and Circuit De Catalunya, welcome both the F1 and MotoGP circuses running similar layouts, including ample runoff areas for cars and motorcycles.

The Red Bull Ring added a chicane on the run up to Turn 3 for MotoGP in 2022 to slow riders down following several violent crashes in 2020 and 2021.

“We always have to try and find a compromise,” stated Hamilton. “Sometimes it hurts them, sometimes it hurts us a little bit more in terms of these kinds of things.

“I think we just need to maybe take these kerbs it’s a good learning we can take these curves to a bunch of other tracks.

“Because obviously MotoGP are fine with these kerbs, and we can have these [kerbs] in Austria, for example. When you go beyond them, you should be able to utilise as much as possible.”

Ed Spencer
Ed Spencer
FIA accredited journalist
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