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Ad Diriyah Track Mods Implemented

Several changes made to Ad Diriyah circuit ahead of 2019 season opener…

Photo: Formula E

Several layout changes have been made to the Ad Diriyah circuit layout ahead of next weekend’s ABB FIA Formula E Championship season-opener.

Slightly re-profiled corners, pit lane entrance and a different location for the Attack Mode are the key areas of modification for the 1.54-mile Saudi Arabian circuit.

The wall at the final turn (Turn 21) has been altered, as has the pit lane layout which has been elongated to now begin at a slight kink after the penultimate Turn 20 corner.

The official FIA race control center has been moved in order to have more space for the official operation to work in.

Additionally, extra drainage provisions to the circuit have been made for this year after issues disrupted the running of last December’s event when it held the opening round of the 2018-19 season.

The Attack Mode activation zone will now be placed this year at the Turn 18/19 chicane, moving from last year’s controversial location on the exit of Turn 17.

This caused some concern on safety grounds as cars peeled off to the right after immediately negotiating the right-hand corner.

E-racing365 contacted several drivers regarding the changes made at Ad Diriyah this week and they were all largely positive regarding the changes.

“I think the Attack Zone position should be better and safer than last year,” said BMW i Andretti Motorsport’s Alexander Sims.

“There will be some time loss [in the Attack Zone] and also there is some slight change to T5 but I think it’s just the exit barriers being deeper which will make the corner a bit tighter potentially but with no major difference.”

Envision Virgin Racing’s Sam Bird says that anytime the Attack Mode activation zone is “on the outside of a corner is should be more interesting”, meanwhile.

A shakedown next Thursday afternoon is scheduled at the new circuit before the opening two races of the 2019-20 season take place on Friday and Saturday afternoon.

Sam Smith is e-racing365's Formula E Editor. A 20-year veteran in motorsports media, including press officer roles in both the FIA Sportscar Championship and at Lola Group, Smith is a well-known face in the Formula E paddock, where he served as series editor for from 2014-17. Contact Sam

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