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Turn 8 at Turkish GP: What makes F1 corner so famous?

Jake Nichol October 5, 2021
Turn 8, Istanbul Park Circuit, 2009 Turkish Grand Prix
Photo by Darren Heath/Getty Images

Formula One heads to Istanbul Park this weekend as the fearsome Turn 8 at the Turkish GP lays in wait. What makes the corner so legendary?

Turkish GP Turn 8 in the spotlight

The Turkish GP returned to the F1 calendar in 2020, to fill gaps left by grands prix being cancelled due to covid-19.

This year, it fills the slot on the calendar of the cancelled Singapore Grand Prix.

Istanbul Park is a 3.3-mile Turn 14 challenge for drivers, with a layout known to promote good overtaking opportunities.

Of all the corners on the circuit, it is one in particular that has gained popularity during races held in Turkey.

F1® Mobile Racing | 2021 Season Update Trailer

F1® Mobile Racing | 2021 Season Update Trailer

The quadruple apex Turn 8 in the heart of the lap.

The complex places huge loads on the car and tyres as the G-forces build through the flat-out section.

It is for this reason, and other heavy traction zones that Turkey is known to be a race high on tyre wear.

Due to the track being resurfaced last year and the wet weather, cars were not able to take the complex flat-out.

Turn 8 good for setting up overtakes

As Istanbul is an anti-clockwise circuit, the quadruple apex section is a left-handed flat-out blast.

A decent sized straight follows out of the final apex,.

This then leads into a heavy braking zone for the Turns 9 and 10 chicane.

Another long straight and heavy braking zone follows, where it is easy to make a mistake and lock-up.

It was at this corner where Charles Leclerc threw away a podium on the final of last year’s wet race.

Does Turn 8 at Turkish GP inspire any other corners in F1?

The track was designed by German Hermann Tilke – a favourite of the FIA.

Tilke has designed F1 tracks in numerous countries, including Bahrain, Russia, and Yas Marina in Abu Dhabi.

Not all his tracks have been successful.

Layouts in Korea and India were copycat designs that did not create good racing.

Such was the success of Turn 8 at the Turkish GP, on the calendar, Tilke has attempted to re-create it at new circuits.

Similar designs are found at Turn 3 in Sochi.

Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images

Turns 17 and 18 at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas also draw inspiration from Turn 8 at the Turkish GP.

It was at the complex in 2017 where Max Verstappen cut the track on the final lap whilst overtaking Kimi Raikkonen.

Verstappen cut to the inside of the white line and technically completed the move off the track.

He was handed a five-second time penalty and lost his third place on the podium to Raikkonen as a result.

Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images

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Jake can usually be found writing about or watching anything to do with motorsport – from Formula 1 to NASCAR to British Truck Racing. His work as a motorsport journalist has been published by the likes of Autosport, and Motorsport News – all highly respected names. Away from racing he is a keen amateur astronomer, podcast listener and enjoys long walks in the park with his three dogs.