E rst at the beginning of September the last layer of asphalt was on the circuit of the Americas in Austin. However, thousands of Formula 1 races were held on the brand new track last week. However, the Grand Prix did not take place in real life, only in virtual reality.
GP USA in the Formula 1 game 'F1 2012'
The official Formula 1 game 'F1 2012' has been on the market since September 20th (for PS3 , XBox & PC). As always, with improved graphics, more realistic weather, a new champions mode with all six world champions, the new Pirelli colors and of course the current pilots. The 2012 generation of cars was also planted by the Codemasters developers - along with the ugly stepped noses.
And as always, all of the racing tracks of the current season can of course be played. That means: While the craftsmen are still lumbering down the slopes in Austin, things are already happening in F1 2012. The first pictures of the construction work on the Circuit of the Americas have already whet the fans' appetite for the race in Texas. But it is only on the virtual steering wheel that you can see what the new course might feel like for the pilots.
Technically demanding track in Austin
Of course, the centrifugal forces and compressions can be done at home Do not simulate living room. Nevertheless, the first test laps in Austin clearly show that the track has it all. 'We tried to build in as many traps as possible for the pilots,' said architect Hermann Tilke with a grin. 'You shouldn't have it too easy. Mistakes are welcome.'
One would like to curse the Rhinelander for his words. In the first test rounds on the Playstation, one slip after the other. 20 corners, 5.516 kilometers - and hardly a single lap is perfect. Especially the approach to the trademark of the Circuit of the Americas - the grandiose curve 1 - has it all.
Disoriented through turn 1
At more than 270 km /h, it goes up the home straight in seventh gear. The street suddenly becomes very wide. But where is the vertex? Left somewhere. Orientation equal to zero. The first attempts always fail. It takes time to find the braking and turning point. Those who are too careful are wasting time. Several lines are possible, attacks in the race guaranteed.
Yeswhoever is through turn 1 in one turn has only mastered the first of many obstacles. The ultra-fast S-curves await from turns three to nine. Each with a different radius. In addition, it goes constantly up and down over small knolls, which does not make it easier to find vertices. Until the rhythm is right, you have explored all the run-off zones on the right and left several times.
Austin lap in the onboard video
The final highlight awaits at the end of the lap. The combination of curves 16, 17 and 18 is actually an elongated 180 ° bend with three apexes, which ideally is blown through in one move without taking off the accelerator at more than 200 km /h. You already guessed it. That's not that easy. Especially when the tires wear out during the race and the car starts to slip.
We recorded a lap on the new Austin Grand Prix track and took it with us in the onboard video with Michael Schumacher's Mercedes. In the gallery we also show you the screenshots of the key points again.