Chasing the light
The Baku City Circuit is a relatively new addition to the Formula 1 calendar, with its debut in 2016. However, the location itself has a rich history, with the city of Baku, Azerbaijan, serving as a hub of trade and culture for centuries. In recent years, the city has experienced a major transformation, becoming a hub of modern architecture and culture.
It's anti-clockwise race organization was penned to paper by architect Hermann Tilke; utilizing the various bends of the streets and architectural marvels abundant throughout the Old City to define the hard-points of the technical circuit, making sure to visit landmarks such as the 15th century Maiden Tower. The course was designed to feature one of the fastest straights in the F1 roster, a blistering top speed of almost 220mph (360km/h).
The track's long straights, tight corners, and narrow sections make it one of the most challenging street circuits on the Formula 1 calendar, up there with Monaco or Istanbul. The circuit's most notable feature is the narrow twist that passes through the Old City, known as the 'castle section', whereby the cobbled streets are covered with asphalt for the GP weekend and the enclosing walls are separated by just 24.9ft (7.6 meters).
In 2017, the Azerbaijan Grand Prix was inaugurated with Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull becoming the winner. The Baku City Circuit has become a popular event for both fans and teams alike, with it's gorgeous backdrops of eclectic skyscrapers, multi-colored and vibrant aesthetic styles and extremely tight corners with fast straights.