F1 Italian Grand Prix - Previews

There are a handful of corners whose notoriety arguably matches that of the track of which it is part. Like the Corkscrew at Laguna Seca, the Karussel at the Nürburgring or Eau Rouge at Spa. But it seems that one of them is unfortunately being diluted.

The corner is known as Parabolica. It's the last turn at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, home of the Italian Grand Prix in Formula One and a number of other races throughout the year.

Situated at the end of the back straight, the Curva Parabolica is a sweeping 180-degree corner approached at upwards of 200 miles per hour, clipping the apex at over 100 mph and exiting onto the start/finish straight. Get it just right and you're set for the straight ahead. Scrub off too much speed and you'll never catch up. But if you try to carry too much speed, you'll end up running wide over the grass median and beached in the gravel. Game over.

Only that won't be the case anymore, because track officials are paving over the run-off area in time for the Italian Grand Prix in a few weeks. The modification removes any physical penalty for overshooting the Parabolica, diluting the challenge that makes it as great as it is. As far as racing fans, drivers and pundits are concerned, that's about as close as anyone could come to paving paradise and putting up a parking lot.

The decision was reportedly taken in order to lure the World Superbike Championship back to the circuit after officials expressed concern at the lack of paved runoff areas.