The Year Chicanes Ruined Formula One

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1994 was a depressing year for Formula One. During the third round of the season, the world lost Ayrton Senna and Roland Ratzenberger at the San Marino Grand Prix. At the very next race, Karl Wendlinger’s had a big crash and the FIA asked for series of track safety modifications. This basically means they asked the tracks to add ridiculous chicanes to slow the cars down before all of our favorite corners.

I guess when you lose two drivers and almost a third in the first few rounds of the season, you need to take drastic measures. If you have time to only check out one chicane, look at Spa at 1:26 in the video. It’s almost hard to believe.


The cameras in 1994 were almost as bad as the chicanes. Sorry about the poor quality video and screengrabs, but it was 23 years ago.

Most of the changes were removed the following year for obvious reasons, but in 1994, chicanes ruined Formula One.

And yet we complain about the lack of passing today.