Suzuka: new chicane and 130R

Map showing modifications to 130R and chicane at Suzuka

Japan’s famed Suzuka Circuit is undergoing two major modifications in time for the 2003 racing season, according to the track’s official website.

The high speed “130R” corner will be reprofiled into a two-radii sweeper; the first part with an 85 metres redius and a second half radius of 340 metres. The effect will be to provide a faster and more sweeping corner which turns in sooner. The work also removes the bump in the centre of the corner which unsettled cars.

The corner originally had a 130 metre radius - but we assume it is not to be renamed 85R/340R after the revisions!

The changes follow a huge accident at least year's Formula One event, when the Toyota of Allan McNish got out of shape through the daunting corner and speared off track, piercing through a guardrail. The new corner profile allows for an increased paved run-off area.

The new corner will lead into a revised Casino Triangle chicane, which has been moved closer to 130R. The new chicane is more open than before and leads into a sweeping final turn. Motorcycle racers will have a second chicane to negotiate before the start/finish straight.

Both changes, which are scheduled to be completed this month, will result in about 10 feet being added to the overall length of the motorcycle course, which now measures 3.619 miles (5.824 km).

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