Thursday, July 1, 2010

Circuit Park Zandvoort

John Marine | 7/01/2010 06:18:00 PM |
Near the coastline of the North Sea is Circuit Park Zandvoort. This Dutch track has been around since 1948. Today's Zandvoort is a 2.5 mile course, and this configuration has been around since 1995. Circuit Park Zandvoort is located north of the city of Zandvoort, Netherlands in a city called Burgemeester van Alphenstraat, Netherlands. I began to thinking about this track as I've raced it in ToCA Race Driver 3. Today's course boasts 13 turns of undulating roads and vicious corners (some of which have some banking to them). The track is pretty physical. Maybe not physical as in tracks like Spa-Francorchamps, but surely not some plain-jane race track. This blog entry concerns the only other race track in the Netherlands that isn't Assen.

--- Circuit Park Zandvoort ---
Take a look at this circuit:

^ from: - Circuit Park Zandvoort's current configuration. This picture, however, excludes the historic configuration.

Circuit Park Zandvoort undulates and features some intense corners. It has its fair share of elevation changes and some banked corners. It probably helps that Zandvoort used to be a Formula 1 Grand Prix course. This track will test you in so many ways. It isn't any kind of powerhouse track, but it's certainly not vanilla. It has its fair assessment of intense corners. It's actually pretty fun to race.

One-Lap Description.
Remember that this blog entry is about the current Zandvoort. The first corner is a right-hand corner known as Tarzanbocht. It is a 180-degree corner that goes progressively uphill through the midpoint of the corner. The road under you goes a bit downhill heading into a brief left-hand kink followed by a very fast right-hander called Gerlachbocht. More undulations in the road await you all the while. The road dips down, then comes back up as you power through the 180-degree left known as Hugenholtzbocht. The road ahead now snakes right and left, then right again. Hunzerug is right-hand kink to the full course, and it also a section that leads to a smooth 180-degree turn of the Zandvoort short course. The road leading up to Hunzerug goes slightly uphill, then back down slightly. After Hunzerug of the Grand Prix course is a left-hand kink called Zijnveld. There is a little banking in the corner as you reach Zijnveld. More banking follows in the right-hand kink known as Rob Slotemaker Bocht (named for Rob Slotemaker, who was killed from a crash resulting in a broken neck racing this track in 1979). What follows after Rob Slotemaker Bocht is Scheivlak- a long sweeping right-hand corner. After a subtle left-hand kink comes Marlborobocht. Marlborobocht is a very sharp right-hand corner. The road sweeps to the right and is met with another sharp right-hander called Renaultbocht. What follows is a subtle right-left chicane before a long left-hander at Turn 9 follows. The road ahead is basically the fastest part of the course. The road sweeps slightly to the left as you power down the backstretch. Enjoy that blast of speed because it all comes to an end when Turns 10 and 11, a vicious right-left-left complex called the Audi S Bocht, follows. Turn 10 is a sharp right-hand corner, and Turn 11 is a 180° left-hander. A moderate straight follows and leads into a somewhat sharp right-hander at Turn 12 (Kumho Bocht). The rest of the course rides like an oval as Turn 13 (Arie Luyendyk Bocht) is merely a high-speed sweeping right-hander. After crossing the Start/Finish line, 2.5 miles of Dutch goodness awaits you for more laps.

One-Lap Video.
I have so much respect for Bernd Schneider. He takes you for a lap around Zandvoort in this video uploaded in 2007:

On estimate, a DTM race car will lap Zandvoort in about 1:42.000 to 1:45.000. The lap record around this course was 1:28.353 by Adrian Zaugg of A1 GP Team South Africa in 2007.

For more information on Circuit Park Zandvoort, please visit Circuit Park Zandvoort's website (Dutch only). Thank you for reading! Hope you have an amazing day/night!
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