LA­GUNA SECA

THE WORLD’S BEST CIR­CUIT? HERE’S HOW IT DRIVES

Wheels (Australia) - - Head To Head -

Rainey & Turn 10

You lose an­other 35m of el­e­va­tion in the next fourthgear left, Rainey, where the cir­cuit sheds cam­ber as it tight­ens and your car feels like it’s be­ing pulled to the out­side wall. A fast, banked right is next, in fourth, the track seem­ing to catch the car as you bend in the wheel.

Turn 11

Tight left pre­cedes start-fin­ish straight, with a wall right up against the apex curb­ing. Even pro­to­types crawl here, rarely do­ing more than 80km/h – so slow it feels like you’re walk­ing. Pa­tience helps here, as it does with La­guna gen­er­ally.

Start & Turn 1

Turn 1 doesn’t get a name but no one who’s been through it in anger will ever for­get it. Porsche 935s hit 225km/h through La­guna’s first and fastest cor­ner, an up­hill/down­hill left. In our man Smith’s hands the CSL nudges 190km/h.

Turn 2, An­dretti

A mon­strous brak­ing zone fol­lows Turn 1, one that’s worth get­ting right, then it’s into the se­cond-gear left hair­pin, An­dretti. Best ne­go­ti­ated with a late apex since it tight­ens a lit­tle to­ward the exit.

Turns 3, 4, 5 & 6

Two fast, flat and fea­ture­less rights, their dusty run-offs hemmed by close fence, then two climb­ing lefts. The last of these has a deep apex dip and an off-cam­ber exit; one slams your lungs into your stom­ach, the other nudges them back to­ward your in­ner ear.

Ra­hal Straight

The tar­mac blis­ters up this long climb, dis­ap­pear­ing into sky, a panorama of hills stretch­ing out to your right. The peak gives a brief view of the ocean, usu­ally at the crest of fourth gear, and then you roll off the brakes and into the Corkscrew.

Turn 8, The Corkscrew

Third gear in the CSL if you get a good run, se­cond if you’re stuck in traf­fic. The Corkscrew’s bor­dered by tall oaks so go­ing in is like fling­ing the car into a whirl­wind of trees: nearly 20m of el­e­va­tion dumped in a heart­beat.

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