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“Your F1 circuit rankings are a disaster!” : the clarification of Julien Fébreau

Who says classification of Formula 1 circuits, says debate.

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“Your F1 circuit rankings are a disaster!” : the clarification of Julien Fébreau

Who says classification of Formula 1 circuits, says debate. After analyzing the 24 tracks of the 2024 season during the Bahrain GP, ​​we had to confront ourselves. After free practice, qualification. Or disqualification? We asked the voice of F1 on Canal, the official broadcaster of the discipline, to analyze our ranking which sees Silverstone triumph. Julien Fébreau delivers his own podium and gives his definition of the ideal circuit. See you at the first turn!

LE FIGARO. - In our ranking, Silverstone triumphs ahead of Spa-Francorchamps and Interlagos. What do you think of this podium?

Julien FÉBREAU. - The best part is missing! I don't know how you could have missed Suzuka (in Japan, Editor's note) which is the best circuit in the world, by far! It's a shame ! (laughs) When you ask Formula 1 drivers, they put it first or second behind Spa. Under no circumstances can he be out of the top two places. It is a disaster. You are bad (he bursts out laughing). Silverstone brings together a lot of elements. The story of course. Silverstone is an ultra-fast circuit where the cars can express their speed well. For several years, we have been witnessing a wonderful spectacle. I would have also put him on the podium. My ranking would have been: Suzuka first, Spa-Francorchamps second and Silverstone third. The Belgian GP often comes up in drivers' mouths: it's a big circuit, very hilly. As soon as you increase the altitude, it’s rare that it gives you a bad circuit. There's always something going on. Spa has a very varied number of turns, which makes it a complete circuit, ultra-fast and with a fantastic setting.

Tell us about your love for Suzuka...

Sector 1 is madness: this first double right that you have to pass at phenomenal speed... It's a roller coaster. There is not a turn to spare and it is the only figure eight circuit with the bridge crossing the circuit. It's magical. The atmosphere created by the Japanese spectators, who have a touch of madness, reinforces the show off the track. There is of course the Prost-Senna duel. But also enormous sadness with the death of Jules Bianchi in 2014.

Miami, Qatar and Austin bring up the rear. A big stupidity too?

For Miami, I agree with you. There's nothing really interesting about the place. They've been resurfacing the asphalt for two years and they're failing: either the grip is too violent or it's too weak. There are no exciting turns. Qatar, I wouldn't put it that low, because last year there was a crazy Grand Prix: the teams were forced to make at least three pit stops and were therefore able to make the most of their tires. It was an extraordinary physical challenge. We saw some drivers physically collapse at the end of the race. They were ready for a marathon and they ran an Iron Man. The Austin route is very beautiful, the setting is nice, and the atmosphere is crazy. The track is not very conducive to overtaking. But the first sector is really interesting. I wouldn't have gone down a Barcelona anymore.

In our ranking, there are ultimately only two modern circuits. Were the slopes better before?

There is a bonus for seniority, of course. Afterwards, let's look at the races: every other year, we witness a crazy Grand Prix in Baku. Jeddah, in Saudi Arabia, is an ultra-fast circuit that borders on dangerous. In Las Vegas there is very little grip, forcing drivers to approach it differently. The first GP last year was great!

What is your definition of a great tour?

My only two criteria: technicality and highlighting the quality of the car and the driver. For me, the circuit has to be ultra-fast, there have to be ultra-sudden changes of direction and it has to be a place where the driver doesn't have to just hold on. It needs courage. And a physically intense commitment: at the end of a qualifying round, he has to catch his breath!

SEE ALSO – Paul Pogba reacts to his four-year ban for doping

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