Mika Hakkinen: “Absolutely Fantastic” F1 Street Circuits

Mika Hakkinen Absolutely Fantastic F1 Street Circuits

Well, we were surprised by this. F1 street circuits like those in Miami and Baku, according to Mika Hakkinen, only make things more difficult.

Street circuits like Miami and Baku are “brilliant” and “absolutely great”, reckons Mika Hakkinen is a two-time world champion and an F1 legend. Keyboard warriors, the word is out.

Hakkinen surprised us with his favorable opinion of street tracks during a lengthy interview with TG at the 2022 season finale in Abu Dhabi, which also covered Max Verstappen’s second championship, Daniel Ricciardo’s uncertain future, and George Russell’s relationship with teammate Lewis Hamilton.

Remember that this is the only driver Michael Schumacher has ever feared, a driver who won his world championships in 1998 and 1999, a year in which only three grand prix races were held on street circuits: those in Australia, Monaco, and Canada.

Five of the first seven races and nearly one-third of the entire 2023 season will be held on streets.

“We know the cities can offer so many attractions for fans,” explained the Finn. “You have restaurants, you have shopping malls, you have beautiful hotels. People can look at the race from their balcony.

“And if people can stay in a boat, it’s a luxury. Formula 1 is Formula 1, it’s a luxury business, and people can enjoy incredible atmosphere. So to have races in the cities, I think it’s brilliant.”

Furthermore, for the rivals as well as the fans. “The teams and drivers face more difficulties as a result. Drivers are compensated, though, to take on these difficulties and provide a fantastic performance for the audience. Go flat out.”

However, isn’t there a chance that the most prestigious traditional racetracks, which frequently offer the closest wheel-to-wheel action, will be removed from the calendar?

“I think it’s just purely a balance,” says Hakkinen. “Every race cannot be a city, and every race cannot be out of the cities. So it has to be a balance.

“And it’s common sense: we know that street circuits require compromises, you cannot move big buildings, you cannot have huge hills and camber changes in the corners. You have to have compromises.

“Life is the same thing. We cannot have everything that we want.”

News source: topgear.com/

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