Within the framework of the GUINEVERE (Generation of Uninterrupted Intense NEutron pulses at the lead VEnus Reactor)  and FREYA (Fast Reactor Experiments for hYbrid Applications ) European projects  the VENUS-F facility has been designed and built at the SCK-CEN research centre of Mol (Belgium) in order to perform a series of experiments aiming to develop, improve and validate the existing techniques for the subcriticality monitoring of Accelerator Driven Systems . The facility consists of a zero power fast reactor operated in sub-critical conditions coupled with an upgraded version of the GENEPI neutron generator previously used for the MUSE experiments. As a part of the FREYA project, a dedicated experimental campaign to support the design and licensing of the MYRRHA reactor is being envisioned in the VENUS-F facility and this requires the realization of a new core configuration with respect to the current one. At the beginning this MYRRHA mock-up configuration will need to be critical in order for some standard experimental methodologies to obtain the reference reactivity value to be applied (i.e. rod drop). In this paper the optimization studies from the neutron physics point of view aiming to design a VENUS-F configuration representative of the MYRRHA core arc presented.