Pat Symonds is interested to see how the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend plays out, especially with the track changes that have been made ahead of the 2016 event.
The Williams Martini Racing Chief Technical Officer believes that if the resurfaced and re-profiled Sepang International Circuit provides better racing as a result of its changes, then it could open up opportunities at other tracks to make alterations in the future.
“The new date for Malaysia takes us to the first of two circuits that really stretch the car after the confines of Singapore,” said Symonds. “In Kuala Lumpur we also have the challenge of extensive changes that have been made to the track.
“As well as the complete resurfacing of the track there is also some realignment which has been specially designed to improve the racing. It will be interesting to see how successful it is, and if it acts as a pointer to future circuit modifications.”
Looking ahead to this weekend, Symonds believes it is the right choice for Pirelli to bring harder compounds to Sepang, with some high-speed corners making these tyres necessary.
“From a performance point of view, of course, the focus is on the very high temperatures and humidity which not only affect the car set-up but also take a high toll on the drivers,” insisted Symonds.
“The circuit is tough on tyres and hence we move up the spectrum once again using the hard, medium and soft compounds. There are several high-speed long corners where loading dictates the advantage of the more robust compounds.
“The circuit has good overtaking opportunities and we can expect an exciting race but, as always in Malaysia, we will be keeping a very close watch for the heavy rainfall that can disrupt this event.”