Since the Formula One World Championships began in 1950, over 60 circuits have hosted at least one grand prix. That’s a lot of track to talk about, and deciding which ones can be called the best of all time is a difficult task.
Some circuits, like Spa-Francorchamps, Silverstone, and Monza, stand out as the pinnacles of racing for every fan of the sport. But F1 never stands still, and even these iconic circuits have been modified over the years to keep up with the changing face of racing, allowing for new ideas, growth, and surprises.
Other tracks might not have as much history, but have elegant designs, great races, or were the site of dramatic moments in the sport.
Spa-Francorchamps has hosted the Belgian Grand Prix ever since the F1 championship was established in 1950.
This track is home to one of the most thrilling corners in Formula 1, Eau Rouge, which lets cars blast through the section at full speed. Traveling at speeds of over 180 miles per hour, drivers will gain approximately 114 feet of elevation in just a fraction of a second, making it a thrill to watch, every time.
Monza is one of the longest-running tracks in the history of the sport, predating Formula 1 by over 20 years, being built in 1922. Monza has long been the fastest track on the F1 calendar, often referred to as “the temple of speed.”
The original layout featured a banked oval section, which was eventually bypassed because it was too dangerous. The 1957 running of the Italian Grand Prix was the first edition of the race on strictly just the road course, and while the banking would come back in 1962, the track would unfortunately be the site of a terrible accident. After 1962, F1 would never race on banked corners again.
The Monaco Grand Prix is one of the oldest tracks on the Formula 1 scene. Since day one, it has always been a super tight track that demands high skill from every racer.
However, it’s not always a fan favourite. The tight design of the track limits passing opportunities, meaning a clear order is established early on. On almost no other track are you more likely to win simply by starting at the front. But if you manage to win from a bad starting position, it’s a huge achievement, and would make for a great race to watch.
Silverstone hosted the first-ever race of the world championship era, all the way back in May 1950. Since then it has held the British Grand Prix over 50 times.
Originally a training base for British air crews during the second world war, when the war ended the airfield's perimeter road was put into service as a race track.
Silverstone's overall shape hasn’t changed much, but several corners and chicanes have been added or changed over the years, mostly to improve the overall safety of the track.
One thing that hasn’t changed is the Maggots-Becketts-Chapel complex, which stands out as one of the best quick corner sequences in F1, and has been a big part in why Silverstone has remained a favourite of drivers and fans alike for over 70 years.
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