By Alexandre Cohen
The Formula 1 is the highest class in single seater car racing. The word formula comes from a set of rules which all participants’ cars must adhere too. A Formula 1 season consists out of a series of races worldwide, in 2019 there were in total 21 races of which 11 where located in Europe. The races are taking place at circuits specially made for this purpose. Though also on some public roads.
In this blog, Fly Aeolus presents his 5 favorite European F1 circuits.
5. The Zandvoort circuit
To start our Top 5 of Formula 1 circuits, we decided to start with the Zandvoort circuit. Known as the “Circuit Park Zandvoort”, it is a motorsport racetrack located in the dunes north of Zandvoort, in the Netherlands. The the first race in Zandvoort was held on the 3rd of June 1939. However, the permanent racetrack was only constructed after the war by using old connecting roads. These had been constructed by the Germans during the occupation of the Netherlands. From 1958 to 1985, the circuit has been used every F1 season. Since then the circuit was never used again for a Formula 1 Grand Prix. But guess what? The Formula 1 announced the return to Zandvoort in 2020!
The racetrack is well known for its high speeds. It has a length of 4,3 km and its Tarzan corner, just after the finish/start line is a thrill to see. This corner offers amazing overtaking opportunities. If you are lucky enough to visit the race, try to get a seat in front of this corner to enjoy the best parts of the race.
4. Autodromo Nazionale Monza
Located North of Milan in Italy, the Autodromo Nazionale Monza was built in 1922. It is the third racing circuit in the world that was specially built for its purpose. Since 1950, all the Formula 1 Italians Grand Prix has been held on this Autodromo Nazionale Monza except in 1980.
The circuit has a 5.793 km length and is famous for being one of the fastest circuits of all time. The circuit consist in a lot of straight lines with only 11 turns. The Curva Grande, Lesmos and Parabolica are the 3 high speed turns of the race. If you like high speed, you will be served as the Formula 1 drivers often hits the 350 km/h on this circuit.
3. Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps
The Formula 1 circuit, Spa-Francorchamps, is located in Stavelot in Belgium. The circuit said to be one of the most challenging racetracks in the world mainly due to its fast hilly and twisty nature. Spa is very popular among fans and the drivers; it is the favorite circuit of a big part of the racing community.
At many occasions the circuit had been modified and cut down to become safer as it was considered one of the most dangerous circuit. From 1970, the circuit went 13 years without hosting the Grand Prix and finally in 1983, the F1 returned but on a shorter circuit than the original. Of course, the circuit still retains most of its legendary curves. Raidillon is a technical series of turns which can be passed at a speed of 300km/h. If you have the opportunity to go to the Spa Grand-Prix you have to check if you can sit near Raidillon!
2. Silverstone circuit
The Silverstone circuit in England, next to the Northampton shire villages of Silverstone, is the current home of the British Grand Prix. Silverstone was the first racetrack of the Formula 1 Grand Prix in 1950, which make this circuit very special for many. Some financial issues jeopardized the 2020 English Grand prix to be held in Silverstone. But after negotiations the circuit will host the race again at least until 2025.
The circuit was built on a deserted WWII Royal Air Force bomber station. In September 1947 12 friends organized the first race on the 3 runways. Geoghegan, the organizer of the race ran over a wandering sheep! After this informal race they changed the name to the “Mutton Grand Prix”.
The circuit was an ultra-fast track, almost all corners could be passed in fifth or fourth gear depending on the car. That is why it has been redesigned in 1990.
In England there are also some other interesting racetracks for car fans. You can check the Top Gear racetrack and Goodwood in our blog: landing at a European race circuit!
1. Circuit de Monaco
Here is the winner of our Top 5 most iconic Formula 1 circuits in Europe!
The Monaco circuit is the most famous Formula 1 circuit. The circuit of Monaco is a temporal circuit. It is laid out on the city streets of Monte Carlo, in the neighborhood of Monaco. The inaugural race of the Formula 1 circuit in Monaco was held in 1929. Every Grand Prix they build the full circuit, this takes 6 full weeks and it is being used for 2 weeks, after the Grand Prix they need another 3 weeks to dismantle it.
This race is so special because it is very different to any other Formula 1 race. With its elevation shifts, tight corners and its narrowness. Navigating in the streets of Monaco is another way to show how talented Formula 1 drivers really are, even if it is the slowest Formula 1 circuit.
The qualification phase is a very important part in the Monaco Grand Prix for the drivers. As the the streets are so tight, it is complicated for the formula 1 drivers to overtake each other. We hope that you liked our blog about the best Formula 1 circuits !
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