The Australian Grand Prix is expected to receive a major upgrade, with The Albert Park circuit will undergo its first update in 25 years of history.
Not only will the track be redone for the first time, but there will also be significant changes in its configuration.
The chicane at Turn 9-10 will be removed, forming a long back straight that will see lap times reduced, and another potentially added DRS zone.
The track will be widened at turns 1, 3, 6, 13 and 15, while the cambers will be modified at the last two to allow multiple race lines.
As a result, the average qualifying lap time should decrease by approximately 5 seconds, from 1m 21.0s to 1m 15.8s.
All of this is done in the hope of fostering more overtaking, a common criticism of the Melbourne GP.
Australia’s Daniel Ricciardo was among a host of riders consulted on the changes and said he was eager to see a greater sense of competition return to Albert Park.
“A lot of us were consulted on the changes and I was happy about it,” Ricciardo said, according to the F1 website. “We were allowed to give our opinion and our contribution.
“Not all riders will be lined up of course, but one thing we can agree on is that we want to improve on Sundays, race day.
“I had that in mind when I got my opinion. Widening some peaks, creating more of a straight line in some places to allow an opportunity for more sliding… that was the priority, and I’m sure it’s okay. “
Ricciardo said removing the Turn 9 and 10 baffles was a “compromise”, but he agreed.
“Turn 10 has always been pretty tough because you would come out close to the wall – but the last couple of years the cars are so good now that the pull on 10 is pretty easy and the wall wasn’t much of a threat anymore.,” he said.
“The car didn’t drive as aggressively as it used to be.
“So by removing that chicane, you’re now going to have massive towing off of turn 6, which is going to be fine with the extra DRS zone.”