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Formula One is the most popular annual car-race series in the world. Its global reach allows people from all over the world to attend its races. Attending a race can be an adventure in itself, and a race-goer can expect to experience a new country and culture and interact with people from all around the world. Formula One visits roughly 20 countries on every continent except Africa.


The locations of Formula One racing remain fairly static throughout the year, with only the dates of the races subject to year on year changes. More countries have been hosting a Grand Prix, especially in Asia. Recent additions include circuits in Azerbaijan, the Middle East, Singapore, the United States and Mexico.

Weekend structure[edit]

Formula One events take place over three days, referred to as 'the weekend', starting with practice sessions on Friday, qualifying on Saturday, and culminating with the race on Sunday. Monaco is only exception to this, where the practice sessions are by tradition held one day earlier on the Thursday, leaving the Friday free. The routine below outlines a normal non-sprint weekend:

  • Friday (Thursday in Monaco) kicks off the weekend with two 1-hour Free Practice sessions: one in the morning (FP1) and one in the early afternoon (FP2). Qualifying for some supporting championships may also occur in between or after the sessions.
  • Saturday features the third and final Free Practice session in the morning (FP3) before the official qualifying session, which most often begins at 1PM local time. The qualifying lasts 60 minutes, after which support championships go back on track with either qualifying sessions or races depending on the category.
  • Sunday is the busiest day of the weekend, comprising entirely of races. Support championship races will bookend the day, with the Formula One race beginning anywhere between 13:00 and 15:00 local time, depending on location (the Australian and Abu Dhabi Grands Prix begin late afternoon, the Singapore Grand Prix at 20:00). A Formula One race can last up to 2 hours of running time or 3 hours from race start (whichever comes first; red flag stops the running time), but barring delays or wet weather 70-90 minute races are expected.

As of 2021, a new format that includes the Sprint has been introduced at some tracks. The routine below outlines a sprint weekend:

  • Friday kicks off the weekend with the only Free Practice session in the morning (FP1). Teams will make their best efforts to utilize the limited practice before Qualifying at the FP2 timeslot.
  • Saturday is the Sprint day, kicked off with a Sprint Shootout (read: shortened Qualifying) at the FP3 timeslot, followed by a 100-km Sprint Race that lasts roughly a third of the main race on Sunday. Offers limited points for the Top 8 and pitstops are optional, however results from the Sprint Race do not affect the main race.
  • Sunday works the same way as a normal non-sprint weekend.

Support races[edit]

With only six hours of action over three days, the crowd can get restless when the Formula One cars aren't racing around the track. However, the Formula One championship is joined by many other supporting championships over the weekend to keep the track alive. The races may be shorter and the cars may be slower, but don't discount the excitement (and carnage) they may bring.

  • Formula 2 (F2) is the feeder series to F1 and is present at most European and Middle Eastern races. Formula 2 cars look like smaller versions of F1 cars and their drivers are eager to cut their teeth into world-class racing, as finishing well in this series helps to acquire the prestige and Super License points necessary to make it to F1. Formula 2 features 30-minute practice and qualifying sessions on Friday and Saturday respectively, and one race each on Saturday and Sunday. The series has a reputation of delivering future racing stars, and several of the current crop of F1 drivers, such as Lewis Hamilton, Lando Norris, Alexander Albon, and Charles Leclerc were once Formula 2 drivers.
  • Formula 3 (F3) is a rung down from Formula 2, with young drivers getting their first taste of international racing. The series is present at most European races. Like Formula 2, there are 30-minute practice and qualifying sessions on the Friday and Saturday before two races on the Saturday and Sunday. While successful F3 drivers typically graduate to F2, a notable exception is current F1 series champion Max Verstappen, who went directly from F3 to F1.
  • Porsche Supercup is a sports car series where all drivers compete in identical Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars. Most current Porsche factory drivers have competed in Porsche Supercup.

Grand Prix locations[edit]



The hairpin (L'Epingle) at the Circuit de Gilles Villeneuve offers great viewing opportunities

Canadian Grand Prix - Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montréal

  • Date: mid-June
  • Tickets (2014): General Admission: $45.45 (F), $70.50 (Sa), $95.75 (Su), $126.00 (weekend); Grandstand: $267.50-560.00; 1 child under 11 per ticket-holding adult: Free
  • Certainly one of the best venues on the calendar, the Circuit de Gilles Villeneuve often produces some of the best racing of the season. The circuit is within the Parc Jean-Drapeau on Île Notre-Dame island right across downtown Montréal. Popular seating areas include along the start/finish straight, at the first chance and down at the hairpin. Although most of the recent races have been dry, wet weather is a possibility with heavy rainfall delaying the race by two hours in 2011. Expect to see close racing and plenty of overtaking.
  • Contact:, +1 514-350-4731 ext 230

United States[edit]

Miami Grand Prix - Miami International Autodrome, Miami Gardens, Florida (about 16 miles/26 km north of downtown Miami)

  • Date: early May
  • Tickets: No information yet available
  • The Miami International Autodrome is a temporary circuit set around Hard Rock Stadium, home of the NFL's Miami Dolphins, and the stadium's private facilities. The newest circuit to be part of F1, it held its first races in 2022, and is contractually guaranteed of remaining on the calendar until at least 2031.
  • Contact:

United States Grand Prix - Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas

  • Date: late October
  • Tickets[dead link]: General Admission: $59 (F), $79 (Sa), $99 (Su), $169 (weekend); Reserved Seating: $79 (F), $149 (Sa), $249 (Su), $299–499, depending on location (weekend)
  • A purpose-built track for the Formula One circus, the Circuit of the Americas features large undulations which offer great viewing spots from many of the grandstands. The circuit is near Austin Bergstrom International Airport, making the circuit easy to reach from most parts of Austin.
  • Contact:, +1 512-301-6600

Las Vegas Grand Prix - Las Vegas Strip Circuit, Las Vegas, Nevada

  • Date: mid-November
  • Tickets: TBA
  • The Las Vegas Grand Prix is the newest Grand Prix, first held in 2023. The second night race in F1, it races around Las Vegas, including the famous Las Vegas Strip.
  • Contact:


Mexican Grand Prix - Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez Mexico City

  • Date: late October
  • TBA
  • Autodromo Hermanos Rodríguez returned to the calendar in 2015 after being absent since 1992, to the appreciation of the enthusiastic Mexican fans, who have Sergio Perez to cheer for. The circuit is a mixture of long straights and winding esses.
  • Contact:


Brazilian Grand Prix - Autódromo José Carlos Pace (Interlagos)[dead link], São Paulo

  • Date: mid-November
  • Tickets: Grandstand: R$995-R$3,320 (weekend)
  • Brazil has been represented on the F1 calendar by the Autódromo José Carlos Pace since 1991 and was the site of the championship decider in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2012. Bumpy and quick, the track offers good overtaking opportunities. The Brazilian fans are among the most passionate in F1 and will not hide their joy or disappointment at the fortunes of local drivers. Expect dry conditions, but do not discount the possibility of brief showers.
  • Contact:, +55 11 5666-8822



Bahrain Grand Prix - Bahrain International Circuit[dead link], Sakhir

  • Date: early April
  • Tickets: No information available
  • The Bahrain International Circuit became the first circuit in the Middle East to host a Formula One race in 2004. The race has been held in March/April for the entirety of its run to avoid the scorching summer desert heat. However, the race is usually the hottest of the year. The grandstands provide relief from the sun but when walking around the paddock make sure to stay hydrated. Being in the middle of a desert, the landscape is barren and dull, not unlike much of the racing here. Local civil unrest can be a distraction.
  • Contact:, +973 1745 0000


Two identical bridges tower over the start/finish straight at the Shanghai International Circuit

Chinese Grand Prix - Shanghai International Circuit[dead link], Shanghai

  • Date: mid-April
  • Tickets [dead link]: No information available
  • The Shanghai International Circuit is a modern autodrome built for the first Chinese Grand Prix in 2004. Good vantage points are the hairpin at the end of the 1 km straight, which always has overtaking action, and the main grandstand along the start/finish straight, from which one can view 80% of the circuit. Crowding is never a problem and the event typically undersells, leading to many empty seats. General admission is very cheap compared to grandstand entry, but there are no viewable video screens.
  • Contact: +86 216 956 8888


Fans cheer as local driver Kamui Kobayashi races past during the 2011 Japanese Grand Prix

Japanese Grand Prix - Suzuka International Racing Course[dead link] (or simply Suzuka Circuit), Suzuka

  • Date: early October
  • Tickets [dead link]: Grandstand: ¥15,568-98,592 (weekend)
  • The only Grand Prix in Asia for a long time, the Suzuka Circuit is notable for being the site of numerous championship deciders in the 1990s. The Japanese fans are an enthusiastic bunch and seldom leave the grounds before the sun has set. The best spot for viewing overtaking is along the main straight where one can see moves into the final chicane and into the first corner. There is an amusement park on site for the quieter parts of the weekend.
  • Contact:


The Marina Bay Street Circuit is without a doubt the most visually spectacular circuit in Formula One today

Singapore Grand Prix - Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore

  • Date: mid-September
  • Tickets [dead link]: Grandstand: S$698-S$1288 (weekend); Walkabout: S$68 (F), S$148 (Sa), S$178 (Su), S$228-S$498 (weekend)
  • The Singapore Grand Prix is the first F1 race held at night, and the backdrop of the city of Singapore makes this event a visual feast not to be missed. The Marina Bay Street Circuit winds itself around the harbourfront, going past local landmarks such as the Singapore Flyer, the Fullerton Hotel, and the Merlion Park.
  • Contact:, +65 6738 6738

United Arab Emirates[edit]

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi ِAbu Dhabi Grand Prix News - Abu Dhabi Grand Prix News, Abu Dhabi

  • Date: late November
  • Tickets: General Admission: AED545 (Sa Su); Grandstand: AED1,875 (Sa Su), AED2,080-AED2,600 (wkd)
  • The Yas Marina Circuit hosts the only grand prix that starts in the afternoon and ends after sunset. The circuit does not provide particularly exciting racing, but the grandstands along the two long straights give the opportunity to watch cars race up to 200 mph. The circuit facilities around the paddock are the very definition of opulence, but expect to pay very high prices for access. The temperatures can also get pretty high during the day but should cool down by the time the race gets underway. On site is the Ferrari World theme park.
  • Contact: , +971 2659 9800



Austrian Grand Prix - Red Bull Ring, Spielberg, Styria

  • Date: early July
  • Tickets: No information available
  • In the picturesque Austrian countryside.
  • Contact:


Azerbaijan Grand Prix - Baku City Circuit, Baku

  • Date: mid-June
  • Tickets: No information available
  • Contact:


The steep drop down and climb up of the Eau Rouge-Raidillon complex

Belgian Grand Prix - Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Wallonia

  • Date: late August
  • Tickets: No information available
  • Possibly the best racing track in the world, the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps features everything that makes a circuit great: challenging high speed corners, large changes in altitude, plenty of overtaking opportunities, and a long history of producing exciting racing. The Eau Rouge corner is perhaps the most famous in F1, and Blanchimont and Stavelot are well known in motorsport circles. The best viewing opportunities are at the first corner (La Source) and the climb up to Les Combes. The circuit is notorious for its own micro-climate that can see drastically different conditions at each end of the track so be prepared for anything.
  • Contact: +32 8729 3700


Hungarian Grand Prix - Hungaroring, Mogyoród, Pest County, near Budapest

  • Date: late July
  • Tickets: General Admission: Adult: €68 (Su), €77 (weekend), Junior: €34 (Su), €38 (weekend); Grandstand: Adult: €191-381 (Su), €99-423 (weekend), Junior: €50-169 (weekend)
  • The Hungaroring is notoriously twisty and makes overtaking very difficult. The first corner and the chicane are best bets to see some racing action. Being in Central Europe during the height of summer, temperatures can get very hot, and there is little shading. Grandstands along the start/finish offer some shade. Wet weather has only affected one Hungarian Grand Prix in more than 25 years, so an umbrella would only be needed for protection against the sun.
  • Contact:


There's only one team the fans support at Monza

Italian Grand Prix - Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Monza

  • Date: early September
  • Tickets[dead link]: General Admission: Adult: €45 (F), €60 (Sa) €80 (Su), €90-€95 (weekend); Grandstand: Adult: €100-150 (Sa) €155-590 (Su), €110-600 (weekend)
  • The Italian Grand Prix is one of the classic events on the Formula One calendar and is home to the Ferrari team, where their fans are at their most passionate. The Autodromo Nazionale Monza is located inside a huge enclosed park, the Parco di Monza, which is also a natural reserve. The best viewing spots are at the chicanes and at the Curva Parabolica. Be aware of pickpocketing and the sale of illegal tickets in crowded areas near the circuit's gates.
  • Contact:


The abundance of yachts in Monte Carlo's harbour means there's a grand prix just around the corner

Monaco Grand Prix - Circuit de Monaco[dead link], Monte Carlo

  • Date: late May
  • Tickets: No information available
  • Located on the streets of Monte Carlo, the Monaco Grand Prix is one of the most prestigious automobile races in the world. Overtaking does not feature heavily at the Circuit de Monaco. Viewing is largely restricted in the grandstands; being in a city means buildings block out a majority of the rest of the circuit, although it does provide a great opportunity for fans to get closer to the action than at any other venue. Unlike every other Grand Prix, Friday is a day off, with the cars taking to the track on the Thursday instead.
  • Contact:


Dutch Grand Prix - Zandvoort Circuit, Zandvoort

  • Date: May
  • Tickets prices not announced yet
  • A historic track which hosted its first F1 race in 1952. Formula 1 left the circuit in 1985 but returned in 2021. Traffic into the venue can be notoriously heavy, not only for cars but also for public transport.
  • Contact: +31 23 5 740 740


Spanish Grand Prix - Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Montmeló (near Barcelona)

  • Date: mid-May
  • Tickets: No information available
  • Featuring long straights and a variety of corners, Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya is seen as an all-rounders course, with plenty of opportunities for overtaking. It had been in a sharing arrangement with a street circuit in Valencia, but the latter city dropped out in 2013 and the Spanish Grand Prix has been here ever since. F1 drivers and mechanics are extremely familiar with the circuit, as it's one of F1's main testing venues.
  • Contact: +34 93 571 9700

United Kingdom[edit]

The view from the Silverstone circuit's Luffield grandstands during the 2008 British Grand Prix

British Grand Prix - Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone

  • Date: mid-July
  • Tickets (2014): General Admission: Adult: £58 (F), £76 (Sa), £150 (Su), Child: £29 (F), £38 (Sa), £75 (Su); Grandstand: Adult: £171-295 (Su), Child: £85-295 (Su)
  • A historic track which hosted the first F1 race in 1950, Silverstone is one of the fastest on the calendar and provides plenty of great viewing opportunities. Camping is allowed on site with a permit. Traffic into the venue can be notoriously heavy, not only for cars but also for helicopters, with the circuit becoming the busiest heliport in Europe on race day. Take precautions to deal with the unpredictable British summer weather. Despite having a modern layout and expensive ticket prices, the circuit still retains an old-fashioned vibe, and is still very much an event for the fans.
  • Contact: +44 844 3750 740



Australian Grand Prix - Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit, Albert Park, Melbourne

  • Date: mid-March
  • Tickets[dead link]: Grandstand: Adult: $320-565 (4 days)
  • The Australian Grand Prix takes place at the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit in Albert Park, which is normally a public park the rest of the year. Plenty of good viewing spots and compared to many tracks are quite close to the circuit's edge. General entry is good value with the most popular spot being Brocky's Hill at the back part of the circuit. It is advisable to take a picnic rug or foldable chair if choosing to sit there.
  • Contact:

Get in[edit]


Entry to a circuit requires a ticket. Tickets can be bought for the whole weekend (all three days) or for one specific day (they get more expensive as the weekend goes along). There are generally two types on sale:

  • General admission tickets are the cheapest and most easily available, and they do not restrict the ticket-holder to a particular section of the track. Many circuits have viewing banks that general admission ticket-holders can use, although these fill up very quickly so get there early for a good spot. If the viewing areas are full then there are many parts where standing is available. These tickets do not give the comfort of grandstand tickets, so make sure adequate protection from the elements is brought along. The ground may be uneven or wet underfoot so bring suitable footwear and something to sit on.
  • Grandstand tickets give the best view of a particular section of the track and often have a large screen in view so none of the action is missed. Ticket prices are scaled, with the most expensive stands giving the most protection from the elements along with the best view. Tickets for grandstands are most commonly booked in advance so the buyer can choose a specific seat, although a few may be available on entry. There may be a few grandstands at some circuits that have no seat allocation, although these don't always give the best view.


By car[edit]

Formula One Grands Prix are popular events, so preparations should be made for heavy traffic. If arriving by car, Fridays are often the quietest day, but don't expect to just sail through. Traffic queues on the weekend can be ridiculously long, and unless you are a dedicated soul arriving before sunrise expect to be waiting upwards of half an hour. The same can be said for leaving. A vast majority of the crowd tends to try and leave at the same time, so unless you wish to leave early (and miss some racing) or wait until late in the evening (when there is no racing going on) be prepared for more waiting. The parking areas tend to be extremely large so make a note of anything that can make identifying where you've parked easier. No one wants to be searching for their car at the end of a tiring day.

By shuttlebus[edit]

Some circuits may offer a shuttlebus service, designed to alleviate traffic problems. Cars are parked some way from the track and shuttlebuses run at frequent times to the track in their own designated lane, so this can make entry a much quicker process.

By helicopter[edit]

Arriving by helicopter is the most stylish way for the fan to enter, if you are lucky enough to be a VIP. Most tracks have some kind of heliport, if not a purpose-built one then a field within the circuit perimeter is used. All the worries associated with queueing and waiting are largely foregone, and helicopter is surely the most stress-free way of getting in.

Get around[edit]

Walking is generally the best option (and sometimes the only option) for getting from one area to another. Circuit maps are printed within official programs and on boards dotted around the track. If you do not have a print version of the circuit map consider taking a picture of one of the boards with your phone or camera. Bridges and service tunnels connect the interior of the circuit with the exterior.


There will be many stalls situated just outside the viewing areas selling all kinds of F1 and motorsport memorabilia. Stock typically includes official team/driver merchandise and clothing; pictures and paintings; branded gear such as umbrellas, binoculars and flags; DVDs and other media; and collectible racing car models. Official programs will also be on sale. Be prepared to pay high prices (remember you're mainly paying for the brand), but they can make excellent souvenirs from the event and the gear can be used again for future events. These can usually be purchased online for cheaper prior to the weekend.


With these tracks often located away from city centers, hotels near many of the circuits can sell out up to a year in advance, so if you are intending on staying nearby book early. Some venues, such as Silverstone, allow camping on fields adjacent to the circuit. You will probably need to book a camping ticket to take advantage of this, and these too usually sell out fast so book early if you want to take this option.

Stay safe[edit]

Despite the high visibility of the 'motorsport is dangerous' notices Formula One has quite a good spectator safety record. However, no matter how safe a restricted part of the track may seem you should not venture onto these areas as they can be quite dangerous. Previous spectator fatalities at Formula One races have been caused by the spectators in question being on a restricted part of the track. Sticking to the proper areas drastically reduces the chances of being hurt in an accident. Moving vehicles operate in the paddock areas and along service roads, so keep your eyes and ears open. If someone is hurt, there are medical tents with trained staff at various points around the track; these are marked clearly on circuit diagram boards.

The following general precautions should also be taken:

  • Earplugs are highly recommended especially for young children and those going for the first time. Formula One cars are ear-damagingly loud and having 20 cars over a sustained period of 90 minutes can cause harm. Earplugs will probably be available at the track and some circuits offer basic versions for free. If you are intending on taking a radio to listen to the on-track commentary use a pair on in-ear monitors that can double as earplugs.
  • Sun protection is advised as many races take place in the summer with only grandstand seats getting any meaningful shade. Wide-brimmed caps are handy, and sunglasses are optional.
  • Waterproof clothing is a necessity especially for those not in sheltered areas. Even if the forecast is dry, some areas (for example Spa-Francorchamps) may experience large changes in conditions over a small area. Take a strong umbrella to cope with windy weather, otherwise bring a waterproof coat.

This travel topic about Formula One is a usable article. It touches on all the major areas of the topic. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.