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  COME VEDERE L'ARCHITETTURA CONTEMPORANEA HOW TO SEE CONTEMPORARY ARCHITECTURE
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BUILDING
 
 
Paul Ricard HTTT
Paul Ricard High Tech Test Track
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DESIGNER
 
 
Hermann Tilke

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DESCRIPTION
 
1970 - 2010 Forty Years of Legends
In 1970, Paul Ricard (1909-1997) created the circuit, which to this day bears his name. The historic venue would be the venue of many classic national and international races including 14 Formula One French Grand Prix, 22 Bols d’Or events, and 12 World Motorcycle Championship Grand Prix.

The place quickly achieved legendary status for motorcycle racing fans throughout the world, with the famous performances of riders such as Frenchman Raymond Roche, who carved his name into Bol d’Or history, or the American Eddie Lawson, four times World Champion and multiple winner of the French GP. In car racing, the circuit would achieve its glory days in the 1980s with the achievements of the biggest champions of the modern era: Alain Prost (four wins), Nigel Mansell (two wins) or the Brazilians Nelson Piquet and Ayrton Senna.

Right from its creation, the circuit was ahead of its time, offering unparalleled infrastructure and safety facilities. Unfortunately, due to a lack of investment the circuit was unable to maintain its standing on the international scene.
1999 A New Concept
Hermann Tilke Circuit Paul Ricard HTTTIn May 1999, Excelis S.A. company acquired the Paul Ricard circuit and decided to turn it into the world’s premier circuit dedicated exclusively to testing and communication: the Paul Ricard High Tech Test Track.

Philippe Gurdjian was asked to take in charge the renovation and the modernisation of the Paul Ricard circuit. He undertook an ambitious programme of work designed to make Paul Ricard “a model for all the world’s circuits” and his stated objectives are to be simultaneously “avant-garde, new, high-tech and creative.” In the design of the Paul Ricard HTTT, nothing has been left to chance; new solutions were invented in all aspects.

The work began mid-April 2001, immediately after the international media launch of the Toyota F1 team. It was a complex operation with as many as 1,200 people working simultaneously on the circuit, and over 80 per cent of the work was completed with local business from the Var and the Bouches-du-Rhône departments.

Simultaneously renovation work of the Le Castellet International Airport was going on. Having begun in May 2001, it was completed by December that same year. The complete reconstruction of the Castellet Hotel began on 1st July 2001 and was completed in early 2002.
2002 The First Circuit of Third Millennium
The new test and communications circuit, the Paul Ricard HTTT opened its doors in 2002. The first teams to use the circuit discovered visionary safety and technology, creative and avant- garde design and innovation.

Test circuit for professional teams (F1, GP2, Endurance, Moto GP), constructors and manufacturers, the Paul Ricard HTTT is also an exceptional place for clubs and communications businesses: event organisation and public relations, product launches and shootings. Everything was put in place for a perfect welcome for sponsors, media, photographers and film shooting directors, without forgetting the beauty of the circuit and its setting which makes for amazing pictures.
2006 New Safety Concepts Validated by FIA
The new safety concepts elaborated on the circuit as it was modernized are validated by official motorsports instances. In August 2006, the track is validates by the FIA, and from that time on, it is possible to organise offical FIA races and meetings.
2009 The Circuit re-opens its Doors to Spectators
After some ten years of research and developments, of exclusive meetings and club races, the new direction at the Paul Ricard circuit, decides to re-open its doors to spectators and official races. New grandstands are built and the third volume of the history of the Paul Ricard circuit begins. The return of racing is a true success.
The Blue-line Concepts
Hermann Tilke Circuit Paul Ricard HTTTViewed from the sky, the Paul Ricard HTTT resembles an abstract painting. The most striking visual innovation of the circuit is the Blue Line™ concept which combines creativity with improving visibility on the track. The coloured zones, which mark the border, allow teams to make the most of their track time and give drivers the reassurance of the circuit’s safety provisions. Replacing the traditional gravel traps, or grass verges, the asphalt run-off consists of numerous levels of abrasiveness:

Blue zones:
these run-off zones are situated on each side of the circuit, marked by blue lines. These offer more grip than the actual track to slow down vehicles safely. The driver can then rejoin the track immediately after going off without sustaining any damage to his vehicle.

Red zones:
These are situated beyond the blue zones. They are the most abrasive and are designed to stop a car from colliding with the safety barrier – the concept is known as ‘coalgrip’.

White zones:
white colour markings denote zones, which do not present any danger.

Astroturf:
to ensure a driver does not profit from cutting a corner and does not use the run-off area on the inside of certain bends. This is a red, synthetic Astroturf lawn.

In addition the quality of the paint used for track markings was the subject of detailed research to ensure it would not adversely affect the grip levels of the run-off, which cover a total surface area of 25 hectares. On the majority of the circuit, ‘Melbourne’ type kerbs were installed. To optimise the test conditions for the teams, other types of kerbs, ‘Vallelunga’ style, were installed on different corners of the circuit.

Edit by Paul Ricard HTTT
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LOCATION
 
Continent
Europe
Nation
France [France]
Region
PACA - Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
District
Var
Arrondissement
Toulon
Canton
Le Beausset
Town
Le Castellet
Address
RDN8 2760 Route des Hauts du Camp
 
 
Website
E-mail
circuit@circuitpaulricard.com
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MAP
 
 

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TYPOLOGY
 
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Airports, terminals, etc.
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Renovation, rehabilitation and restructuring
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CHRONOLOGY
 
Project
1999    
Realisation
2001 - 2002
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CLIENT
 
 
Excelis S.A.
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DIMENSIONAL
DATA
 
Lenght
km. 0.826 / 5.861
Number
13 turns
 
 
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