The newest destination on Formula 1’s ever-expanding calendar, Hanoi Street Circuit in Vietnam’s capital is a fast circuit designed with overtaking in mind that takes inspiration from various classic tracks around the world.
The idea of F1 visiting Vietnam was first explored under Bernie Ecclestone’s leadership. It is believed that Ecclestone halted plans for a race in the country just before he was ousted from his role as F1 boss. The relative wealth of existing Asian Formula 1 races and the failures of the Indian and Korean Grands Prix were cited as reasons for the deal not being made at that time.
The Hanoi Street Circuit, located in the Nam Từ Liêm district of Hanoi, is the first new track to be added to the Formula 1 calendar since Liberty Media took ownership of Formula 1. Liberty re-opened negotiations with Vietnam’s promoters soon after taking over the sport. The new deal was announced in November 2018, with the late Charlie Whiting, former FIA Race Director, having visited the proposed location of the new track one month earlier. Construction on the Hanoi Street Circuit began in March 2019. .
Speeds are expected to reach 330km/h on the 1.5km straight, and a lap of the track will be taken at an average of just over 200km/h. Like most modern F1 tracks, the circuit has been designed by Hermann Tilke. Using a mix of existing and purpose-built roads, the Hanoi Street Circuit draws inspiration from iconic sections of other race tracks around the world. The first corners of the 22-turn layout are a mirror image of the opening section of the Nurburgring circuit, while the narrow section of track between Turns 12 and 15 is a nod to the opening of a lap at the Circuit de Monaco. Further on in the lap, Turns 16 to 19 are based on Suzuka’s esses and the final turns are a homage to some of the challenges of Malaysia’s Sepang circuit.
Ross Brawn has suggested that the Hanoi Street Circuit is somewhat of a test track for Liberty, and has been designed with overtaking in mind. It may help to influence the kind of circuit which Formula 1 visits in future seasons. The venue holds a multi-year contract to host the Vietnam Grand Prix.
Vietnam Grand Prix Facts
|Hanoi Street Circuit
|Race first held
|5.565km (22 turns)