Austin reveals track for 2012 F1 race

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

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

154 comments on “Austin reveals track for 2012 F1 race”

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  1. Agree with the point re retaining the character of the track. Layout looks promising so hopefully it won’t be completely tarmac with huge run-off areas as this gives a car park soulless feel. Keep some gravel traps and walls and really test the drivers

  2. There’s an elevation plan on Adam Cooper’s website.

    It looks like the biggest grad change is the run up to Turn 1.

  3. Here’s the link to our local paper with an interesting rendering of the elevation change.

  4. They should name the circuit ‘Austin-stein’! It looks like they’ve literally just copied and pasted sections from other tracks onto their own layout!

    I can see Turn 1 from Hungaroring, Maggots, Becketts and Chapel from Silverstone, the final turn from Sepang, the stadium section from Hockenheim and Turn 8 from Instanbul.

    That’s not necessarily a bad thing, though. It just doesn’t appear to have anything particularly ‘unique’ about it, nothing really new or innovative. That said, it sure looks fun to drive.

  5. Adam Cooper has another picture which shows elevation changes. Turn 1 is really steep but track elevation doesn’t change corners much after first sector.”Turkey-like” corner is a bit affected by it.Just like in Turkey if you can manage to go quicker through it you can carry more speed towards overtake firendly part of the circuit (at least in theory).
    Real judgement will come on race-day of course, Portimao looks stunning but produces awfull racing for example…

  6. There are some interesting ideas in this layout, in my opinion, and one can clearly see that they have taken some inspiration from passages of existing circuits. The first half of the lap seems to have real potential and, to me, seems quite interesting, as there are not that many circuits left on the calendar any more with long, fast, flowing sections as this one appears to be. The multi-apex stuff in the infield after the long straight looks like it could be interesting, as well.

    If they can indeed add some meaningful terrain features to this circuit because of the site they’ve chosen, I think there is quite some potential in this.

  7. The link shows the elevation of the track – looks interesting!

  8. The circuit looks alright, but it should run clockwise to take full advantage of the long straight into the “Mockenheim” hairpin.

  9. Track looks great to me, I would have hoped for at least one banked turn, maybe that multi apex right hander could have 20 degrees of banking!!

    1. Then it wouldn’t be a multi-apex turn.

      Also, anything more than five degress of banking is banned by the FIA unless the organisers and designers request permission for it. It’s unlikely to be give in the case of Austin because of the corners that precede and follow it.

  10. Charles Carroll
    1st September 2010, 14:56

    Well, obviously we’ll have to wait and see, as there have been many plans for tracks in the U.S. that have never come to fruition. The plans are very interesting, however.

    I do like the counter-clockwise flow, but I too would have liked to have seen a banked turn. I understand that it would have required much adjustment to the cars prior to coming there, but if F1 is indeed the pinnacle of motor sport (and I believe it is) then why should they not have to cope with unique challenges?

    A section with two banked corners (basically half an oval) with a road section following would have been very unique and would have represented something truly different in the motor sport world. The increased speed of such a section would reintroduce some danger to the F1 season as well.

    1. Isn’t that basically what Indy was minus one of your 2 banked corners? If that track had used Indys turn 2 instead of infield section coming up in the short chute just ahead of turn 2, that would have made for even crazier speeds in the last corner(Indy turn 1) – That could causes issues for those of you don’t remember Indy 06. Of course, Indy cars that don’t even cost a million dollars manage to take those turns at 350km/h+ for 200 laps. Wimpy F1 cars! :)

      If you want banked, it needs to be in that lower speed Mickey Mouse section — again I beg for a new Karussell!

      1. Charles Carroll
        1st September 2010, 19:08

        I would love to see F1 push the very boundaries of “ridiculous” when it comes to top speed, which is why I was hoping for the fastest track of all time.

        Its probably the American in me, but I wanted this track to be fast, dangerous, and incredible!

    2. That’s what I’ve been thinking about, as well. If I’m not mistaken, the track in India (to be raced next year) will have a banked corner, but I don’t know how many degrees of banking that will have. Does anyone know?

      By the way, check this out: (a circuit that is both oval and figure-of-eight). Something like this might well work. I’ve also designed something in which the figure-of-eight loops into an infield section with more corners (which, presumably, looks more like an F1 track) but I can’t upload it now.

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  12. a_flying_muffin
    1st September 2010, 15:04

    love it
    thank god i live in Dallas

  13. a_flying_muffin
    1st September 2010, 15:07

    love it
    thank god i live in Dallas
    bring on 2012

  14. Here is another image reflecting the gradient changes from autosport.

  15. …now if they can only make it WIDE enough for more then just two cars at each corner, THEN you’d see some interesting passing opportunities. Without having to worry about a guy like Vettel putting you into the weeds.

  16. Okay kind eerie… the smaller version seems to share some sections (albiet mirrored in places) from the track I designed back when Keith asked people to come up with how they think the track should look:

    1. I’m not seeing it. It looks more like Marge Simpson praying than Johnny Bravo.

  17. Love it now that i’ve seen the elevation map. That turn 10 is going to be a nice one – over the crest after that becketts-like section…

  18. Okay, looking at the official images, there are only three minor changes that I’d make:

    1) The long back straight would be an elongated curve, not online the main straight at the Gold Coast. The objective is to move Turn 12 futher west. This will allow the cars to build up more speed on the approach to the Hockenheim section.

    2) Move Turn 15, also to the west so that it is in line with the newly-reprofiled Turn 12. Once again, the obejctive is to stretch out the circuit a little to let the cars build up some more speed.

    3) Change the elevation so that Turn 12 is the lowest point of the circuit and Turn 15 is one of the highest, creating a Rallye Monte Carlo feel up the switchback. This would also make the Reverse Istanbul 16-17-18 combination a downhill bend; in fact, the entire final section would be downhill.

  19. Fred Schechter
    1st September 2010, 16:13

    wipes tear,,,
    Just so excited you’re all coming to visit!
    The becketts type section.
    Turn 1 should be amazing.
    The hill in the back should be pretty wild for both chassis breaking, drivers, and tv “As they come over the crest,,”


    1. Fred…. got any rooms :)

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