Formula 1 is the highest class of single seat auto racing. The series of races, known as Grand Prix, are held worldwide on F1 circuits and public roads. Formula 1 cars are the fastest road racing cars in the world, reaching speeds of up to 240 mph; which don’t drop when the cars are taking on tight, hairpin corners. It’s completely crazy and wickedly cool. Think you have a need for speed? Check out these Formula 1 circuits that are incredible to see during the F1 season.
1. Circuit of the Americas — Elroy, Texas
Located within the Austin city limits, COTA holds the Formula One US Grand Prix. The track was built in 2012 and is one of the newest in the league, and is the first and only purpose-built F1 track in the United States. The track itself is 3.41-miles long and has 20-challenging turns that even the best of racers find difficulty in. In November of 2012, an incredible 117,000-people gathered to watch the first epic race. Since then, the Circuit of the Americas has been the destination for some of the biggest names in racing and action sports.
However, COTA has more to offer it’s visitors than just racing. In the center of the racetrack is the Austin360 Amphitheater that has hosted artists such as Willie Nelson, Nine Inch Nails, Kenny Chesney, Drake and Maroon 5. So, whether you find yourself at the Circuit of the Americas for the rolling hills, the daredevil drivers or the music experience, be assured you won’t ever be disappointed.
2. Marina Bay Street Circuit — Marina Bay, Singapore
Labeled by F1 drivers as the most unforgiving circuit, Marina Bay Street Circuit is unique in that that the track cuts through the heart of Singapore and gliders along it’s coast. The hot and humid weather makes for a challenging and bumpy race. 2008 World Champion Lewis Hamilton said that the Marina Bay Circuit is twice as difficult to navigate than the famous Monaco Street Circuit. Harsh turns, curbs, elevation changes and the famous Floating Platform that the cars race under all add to the difficulty level. Yet, despite the challenging course, there is no denying that Marina Bay hosts one of the most beautiful-looking circuits in the world. At night the city lights up, and each year the city stops for a night to host the world’s only night race. The power required to light up the city reaches nearly 3-million watts, and an illumination that’s four-times greater than the floodlights in football stadiums. This track at night is a shining cityscape bursting with beauty, and at it’s core is the toughest F1 course in the world.
3. Sochi Autodrom — Krasnodar Kai, Russia
What sets this Russian track apart from the rest is it’s location. The Sochi Autodrom runs around the complex that held the 2014 Olympic Games in Krasnodar Kai, Russia. The track runs along the edge of the Medals Plaza where the top olympics stood to receive their winning medals. The circuit has two 90-degree turns and shares around a mile’s worth of the road with the public.
The stand-out aspect of the Sochi circuit is turn three. The turn is the fastest and longest turn in Formula 1 history, and the Russian drivers call it “the engine killer” because of the prolonged G-force that will starve the engine of it’s oil. Nikita Shikov beat all odds when he maxed out at 105 mph around the turn; crazy considering the average speed around that turn is only 93 mph. Seeing a race at this venue, and exploring the 2014 Olympic Park, should be at the top of your bucket list.
FYI: The track is only on a seven year contract, so you may want to visit this one before it’s gone!