Paul Ricard has confirmed the circuit configuration to be used when the French Grand Prix returns to the calendar in 2018.
F1 will return to France for the first time since 2008 - and the first time to Paul Ricard since 1990 - the year after next, following confirmation of a five-year deal at the start of this week. The Paul Ricard track boasts a wide range of well over 100 layouts, the longest measuring in at 5.861km with the famous Mistral Straight and Signes corner.
The race organisers have now confirmed the grand prix will be held on the 5.842km configuration which uses the North Chicane in the middle of the 1.8km Mistral Straight. Turn 1 at Verriers will also be the tightest version of the left-handed corner.
The last time Formula One raced at the venue, a 3.138km version of the circuit was used, featuring a right-handed Turn 1 at La Bretelle which saw the track join midway down the Mistral Straight. This configuration was used in response to a fatal crash for Elio de Angelis at Verriers during testing in 1986.
Romain Grosjean is one of two French drivers on the current grid and described Paul Ricard as "a unique venue" when reacting to the return of the race.
“You can easily imagine how emotional it will be for us French drivers to race in front of our fans," Grosjean said. “I have talked about it with others and to be honest I have had some doubts over the recent years and then all of sudden, thanks to many people pulling together, the return of French GP has materialised.
“It’s quite exceptional. Circuit Paul Ricard is a unique venue and I look forward to being there in 2018 and trying to win my first French GP!”