Austin reveals track for 2012 F1 race

Austin F1 Track Map 3D

The circuit design for the 2012 United States Grand Prix has been revealed.

Designed by Hermann Tilke, the track incorporates sections similar to those at Silverstone, Istanbul and the Hockenheimring. It appears to be an anti-clockwise configuration.

The plans, revealed by the Austin American Statesman, shows a layout which does not seem to have strayed far from the Tilke convention of having designated ‘overtaking’ section with long straights and tight hairpins.

The first sequence of fast bends – modelled on Becketts at Silverstone – looks like an exciting sequence of corners.

Later on in the lap the drivers come across a corner similar in style to the famous Turn 8 at Istanbul – only turning right instead of left.

A large viewing area on the inside of the corner promises views of much of the track.

2012 United States Grand Prix

Austin F1 Track Map

Austin F1 Track Map

Advert | Go Ad-free


154 comments on Austin reveals track for 2012 F1 race

1 2 3 6
  1. Wow! That actually looks pretty good!
    I’m not much of a fan of the fuji-esque switchbach section near the end, but the long corner after it looks pretty good. As does the brilliant looking ‘esses’ near the start. Quite a few hairpins for overtaking, but that first sector looks great!
    On paper, this looks like it could be one of tilke’s best designs.

  2. Xanathos said on 1st September 2010, 10:19

    actually it looks pretty good, especially the first sector with some quick turns. I guess the long straight has to be on a Tilke circuit, but it has improved the racing elsewhere, so we can live with that. But why the fiddly bit after that?
    Anyway, I guess we’ll have to wait and see since they said the track is going to have some ups and downs…

    • That fiddly bit is ment to copy the Hockenheim loop after the straight.

    • F1iLike said on 1st September 2010, 19:18

      I think it looks like a regular Tilke track.. The last part of the first sector or whatever seems pretty fluid and cool but the rest looks like true crap. All that’s missing is some ordinary USA dessert and the craptrack will be complete.. When will they learn not to use Tilke?

    • as long as they dont rip out every tree in the area and don’t surronud the track with asphalt runoff. It will be fine.

      might have over did the first S style section and the really slow part after the long straight though.

  3. Wow. It barely looks like a Tilke track, sans the long back straight section. Looks a lot more like a natural, typical, American circuit with a twisty but challenging sequence of corners with changing radii.

    Not bad, I’d say.

    • damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 1st September 2010, 15:07

      And it seems undulating too! :D But surely this must be slightly exaggerated:

      • I would say that elevation plan has some vertical exaggeration, maybe 5 or 10 times.

        Anyway I think the best looking section is turn 8, 9 and 10, as the cars will be climbing up to turn 10 which sort of looks like it has a crest either at or just beyond the apex of the corner, which means from the drivers point of view they won’t be able to see where the track goes. But cause the actual horizontal deflection through corner is maybe only 10 or 15 degres, the limitation of the speed through the corner isn’t going to be function of the amount of available grip or downforce from the cars, but rather the guts of the drivers. I see it as a corner where a driver in a lesser car, who may be braver than another driver in a better car will be able to use his / her judgement to negotiate the corner faster.

        I also like how the track has been fitted to suit the natural topography, which means Tilke have been able to use natural slopes as viewing areas or “naturalstands” as they are referring to them.

        Overall I think it looks good, but I’m kind of disappointed that a few of the corners seem to be duplications of other corners at other circuits, but from what I understand that was a request from the circuit owner. Without those constraints I’m sure Tilke would have been able to make even better use of the natural topography.

      • Although the elevation is exaggerated, I’ll bet the uphill first corner provides some exciting late breaking on the first lap.

  4. Normally I’m the one dedicated to hating anything touched by Tilke, Even as a flat piece of car park I have to say I really like the design, it actually looks different, Which has to be a good thing…

    I’m looking forward to seeing the Silverstone and Istanbul style corners, even though they have a smiler design, the difference in track before and after them, and the environment around them will make them very different and exciting to see I think.

    The only thing I hope now, is that they don’t just concrete the whole place over, and they retain a feel of the area they are racing in… Any word on the elevation?

    Do some of the restraints on new tracks have anything to do with minimum or maximum average lap speed?

    • It is about 133 feet in total. The highest point should be the first corner.

      • Awesome then…

        If that fiddly bit is meant to resemble the stadium complex in Hock, it will only work if it’s both thin and bumpy in that section…. hmm… not Tilke’s strong points…

        • Joey-Poey said on 1st September 2010, 15:58

          I honestly feel they should get rid of that bit and connect turn 12 to 15

        • I think those switchbacks need to go unless they are integrating some variable banking on each to promote higher speed and possible side by side in those turns. A modern Karossell interest anyone? It is the US after all, there should be some banked turns… Otherwise, cut that section out.

          I think the first sector looks great.

    • One thing I noticed is although certain corners have been copied from other tracks, they’ll have a different feel because of the track being anticlockwise. For example turn 16,17,18 which I presume is the Instanbul style turn 8 section… Is actually a right hander.

      The only part of the track I don’t really like is turn 13-15.. They’ve added this for technicality, but as others have mentioned it does look like it ruins the whole flow of a highspeed track. But we’ll have to wait and see!

      Overall, I’d give it a thumbs up though. Looking forward to seeing this one for sure.

  5. Scribe (@scribe) said on 1st September 2010, 10:44

    Resounding Meh, worse things have happened at sea, some of the corners look pretty groovy and high speed but if there arn’t good overtaking spots it’ll be for nought.

    Will say theres a few corners there that’ll space out the cars and be impossible to follow through, the turn 8 looking bend for instance.

    Well it looks pretty Tilke on paper so unless some of these bends are infact truly spectacular we must hope for decent overtaking oppourtunities.

  6. Too bad we can’t get a sense of any elevation changes in this image… I’d love (for instance) if that Turn-8-esque right hander was down a 20° decline. We’ll see.

  7. Bebilou said on 1st September 2010, 10:48

    Not too bad at first sight. I like the esses (Suzuka-style) at the beginning of the lap, but I hope they will not be taken flat-out.
    The “Istanbul-like” turn at the end is good too, but there are too many slow corners before it.

    Nevertheless, this track looks interesting…

  8. Robert McKay said on 1st September 2010, 10:57

    Copying a post I made elsewhere…

    It’s quite psychedelic. It’s an interesting shape given that the main straight is actually the back straight, so it’s kind of elongated. I like the nod to Silverstone, although it looks also a bit like the Esses at Suzuka (not a bad thing, though).

    The bit immediately around the paddocks looks a tad blah but actually, if this really is it, it looks a lot better than Abu Dhabi, Korea and India do on paper. It actually looks not bad at all.

    The question being, of course, why has it taken this long for a promoter to grab Tilke by the scruff of the neck and say “give us something interesting”.

  9. GeeMac said on 1st September 2010, 10:58

    That’s not bad, not bad at all. My final approval will obviously be reserved for the day we actually se F1 cars on it…

    The Hockenheim style arena section is unnecessary though, all it seems to do is mess up the flow of the circuit before the “Istanbul” corner.

    • Joey-Poey said on 1st September 2010, 16:02

      Seconded. If it weren’t for that part, it’d be a severely fast circuit.

    • Bartholomew said on 2nd September 2010, 15:33

      That Hockenheim area could be replaced perhaps with a banked turn,which is very American.
      If this does not work out, they can revert to the original plan later on.

  10. greg76 said on 1st September 2010, 10:58

    I’m really hoping for a big gradient in the slow section after the back straight, let’s say really uphill, that would mean the Silverstone like curbs in the first part would be slightly downhill, it would be awesome!

  11. It’s OK. I love that sweeping set of corners at the beginning. If there are huge elevation changes like in Suzuka, so much the better!

    I just hope they will leave that stadium section out though. It ruins the flow of the circuit and can make the cars’ setup inclined towards more downforce, which hurts overtaking and makes the rest of the circuit less challenging, set-up wise.

    I’m hoping for some quite extreme elevation chances in this circuit, because this layout is what it needs to make it challenging. The corners for it are there.

  12. Brendan said on 1st September 2010, 10:59

    Looks like the Red Bull spiritual home.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 1st September 2010, 16:16

      Only if Red Bull contune building cars that are designed specifically for this kind of circuit. If they lose the World Championship this year, I expect the RB7 – and possibly the RB8, which would race at Austin for the first time – would scale back its dedicate to corners and concentrate a little more on straight-line speed.

      And even fi they continue the trend there’s little to prevent the other teams from developing similarly-good cars.

  13. The_Pope said on 1st September 2010, 11:00

    Any news on the change of elevation?

    I’m sure someone will create a CG flyby at some point :)

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 1st September 2010, 12:39

      133ft. It’s about 40m all up, and gives Austin the third-greatest elevation after Spa and Suzuka.

      • Steve C said on 1st September 2010, 12:53

        …and you guys thought Texas was flat.

        I like it and being that it will run anti-clockwise, the first turn wll be an uphill left hander.

        Can’t wait to see the construction started. I guess I’ll drive down from work when they start.

  14. This looks like a fun track on paper, not at all like the stop-start, straight-hairpin style of Valencia. Hopefully there will also be some nice gradient changes & hill climbs which aren’t illustrated in the diagram.

  15. NAZ3012 said on 1st September 2010, 11:06

    looks pretty good although with all the challenging looking corners, the tilke-esque hairpin-staright-hairpin looks very out of character with the rest of the track.
    If they had changeable weather down in texas, this track could have turned out like spa, as its so elongated, with rain maybe at the top hairpin and nothing in the pits or vice versa.
    the section before the turn eight style corner reminds me very much of the approach to the hotel at abu dhabi, just the other way round and the becketts section looks slightly tighter than silverstone-could be a huge challenge.
    On paper its the best thing tilke’s ever designed if you ask me.

    • Joey-Poey said on 1st September 2010, 16:06


      Don’t think that’s likely to happen during the race any day soon.

      • US_Peter (@us_peter) said on 1st September 2010, 18:30

        That’ll depend on when they schedule it. I’m hoping they DON’T put it next to Montreal, but stick it at the beginning or end of the season with the other fly-aways. Chances of rain would be better, and Summer in Texas could be wicked hot.

1 2 3 6

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments must abide by the comment policy. Comments may be moderated.
Want to post off-topic? Head to the forum.
See the FAQ for more information.