Monza – spectators’ experiences

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Tell us about your experiences of visiting the Autodromo Nazionale Monza.

You may wish to include:

  • When you visited the track
  • Where you watched from
  • How easy it was to get to
  • How much of the track you could see
  • What support races there were
  • What you liked and didn’t like
  • How much it cost and whether it was good value

Please use the reply box below to leave your comments.

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105 comments on “Monza – spectators’ experiences”

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  1. Monza 2009

    I had 3 day tickets for Section 26A of the grandstands (pit straight). I was in line with rows 5,6 and 7 of the grid and had great views of the Brawn GP and Force India pits as well as a giant TV screen just to my left. Thought the race and atmosphere were awesome, I felt awed by the history of the place. Monza is one of my favourite circuits so to be there was mind blowing. I went own my own, found this okay as there are usually a few other people who do the same thing. I met people over the weekend who I buddied up with on the Friday and Sunday, did my own thing on the Saturday.

    I stayed in Milan, got the train from Central Station to Monza then the free shuttle bus to the circuit. The transport to the circuit was well organised and regular although trains from Central Station to Monza seem to be rare. I got the 08:20 train to Monza on the Saturday and Sunday and was at the circuit for not long after 10 (I think).

    All in all I had a great time and will definitley be going back at some point.

  2. I was at the Ascari chicane for the 2009 race. For any budding photographers forget it – the cars are too fast and the fence is too high but although it was incidentless this year you could see a fair chunk of tarmac. You can take in your own food and drink as these were pricy inside the circuit e.g. €6 for a large beer, €2 for 500ml bottle of water. There are a couple of local supermarkets that were cheaper but remember the Sunday trading laws i.e. stock up on previous days!

    If you have a grandstand ticket, the pit walkabout on Thursday was excellent and most of the drivers were signing autographs if you were prepared to be crushed. Said ticket allows roaming on Friday so for fairly good photo’s, aim for the Grandstand opposite the end of the pit lane so you can get them when they are doing practice starts.

    Getting to and from the circuit was part of the package I’d purchased so I cannot comment on the best way to travel without advertising. I don’t tend to watch the support races as my bottom needs a refreshed supply of blood so I tend only to stay put for the F1 action.

    This was my seventh GP in total and probably one of the best.

    1. Budding photographers? Anyone with a decent camera and lens should have no problem no matter what speed theyre going. Ill show you what I mean in a month when I get back from Monza.

  3. I was in 6B for the race and absolutely loved the experience. The downpour on Saturday night was awesome and led to some excellent support races.

    To be honest Monza is simply set in the most beautiful setting. Walking in through the forest was simply wonderful while arriving to the sound of engines in the distance. There is a really historic feel to the place and I’m so glad I went.

    We tried to get seats in 6C but they were sold out so settled for 6B. I am very glad we did as all the action in the GP2 and other support races was really clearly visible. When in the stand we were surrounded by Finnish Ferrari fans. They seemed to consume about half the stand, man they love their motorsport.

    I am strongly considering going back next year and also possibly going to Spa to live that experience as well. I can definitely say I wasn’t disappointed with the weekend and watching the accuracy of the drivers first hand is a totally different experience!

  4. I went to Monza this year. Some notes in no particular order!

    – The train from Milan to Monza is dirt cheap – 1.65 for a return trip, plus on race day a free shuttle train from Centrale is provided (I forgot as I’d been getting the train from Lambrate each day…).
    – If you have a three day grandstand ticket, do go on the Thursday. I promise it’s worth it! You get to see the pitlane (though finding your way into it for the first time isn’t as simple as you’d think), the teams and the drivers much closer than you otherwise would. If there’s a particular driver you want to catch, loiter outside their garage.
    – Often it’s a case of being in the right place at the right time – I managed to run into Nico Rosberg, Rob Smedley, Tonio Liuzzi, Stefano Domenicali and Luca Di Montezemolo while just wandering around. Pitlane entrance is a good place to hang around to meet drivers coming back from their track walk.
    – There are no shuttle buses on the Thursday, so give yourself a good hour to walk from the train station to the track. The walk isn’t well signposted, so either print out a map or hope you can follow other people in teamwear who don’t really know where they’re going!
    – If you hire a Kangaroo TV, make sure you take a credit card for authentication. Their system doesn’t accept debit cards as proof of ID etc, though it doesn’t mention it on the site.
    – There is a bit of a wasp problem at Monza – take insect repellent.
    – Soft drinks are about 5 Euros a pop, so take your own.
    – The atmosphere is truly something else, even outside the track in the Parco di Monza. Obviously it’s even better if you’re a Ferrari fan. ;)
    – Do walk the banking if you get even half a chance. You’ll regret it if you don’t. Ditto for getting onto the track after the race, though actually getting through the gates isn’t good for claustrophobes. It was a bit like being down the front at a concert, but absolutely worth the discomfort in the end.
    – Advice to McLaren fans? Be thick skinned! ;) I saw no hostility towards McLaren fans themselves; however, the team were booed a bit as they moved up and down the pitlane on Thursday, and there was an eruption of cheers when Lewis crashed at the end of the race this year.
    – My ticket was for the Laterale Sinistra (the grandstand opposite the pitlane exit), which was brilliant for watching activity on the grid, the start and getting near the podium after the race, but you don’t see much ontrack action and overtaking.
    – Fancy a free F1 poster? Try the Milan tourism office in the Piazza del Duomo. There was a stack of them there this year.

  5. Went last year. Fantastic!!! I meant to buy 3 day general admission ticket but only got sunday by mistake. I got a grandstand for fri and sat from ebay.

    Dont try and walk from Monza train station….I did as I couldnt see any other way. Its MILES!!! I found out there is a bus but I have forgotten the number im afraid.

    Friday is roaming for any ticket so good for walking the track and taking some pics. I had a rug which is handy to sit on as even the grandstands are concrete. Its nice and hot and if you look carefully there are a few water taps dotted around the place. All the spots were good for different reasons depends what you want to see. The straights are good to get a feel for the speed but bit boring after a while. Inside of parabolica is good, fantastically close but that is hard work on the neck!

    Sat I had a ticket for the second chicane. It was a good spot for action and having the numbered seat was good for a bit of extra sleep point of view.

    Sunday was an early start to try and get a good spot. I was going for the 1st or 2nd lesmo where there a free 3 step metal stands. I would have seen a few 1st lap passes and LH crash but chose not to as it was in the shade all day. I went for the exit of parabolica, just before pit entry. Loads of space right up the the start of the race!!! Very surprising. Turned out to be a good spot, saw a grosjean mega save which tv didnt catch and watching LH totally flat out every single lap was unreal. I would probably pay the little extra for grandstand tickets next time, just to save the worry about where to sit. If you do go general admission spend the saved money on a kangaroo tv. Getting crofty and ant for all sessions is invaluable.

    The other reason i chose parabolica was for the track invasion. Just before the end of the race get your stuff ready and head for the gate it looks like people are going for. Its amazing, every race should have it. I sprinted down the main straight and just made it in time for the English anthem for Brawn. The atmosphere is incredible, so much fun!!

    Dont worry about wearing english team wear. There were loads of Mclaren people. I just wore my cap. All i got was a bit of banter from a megaphone guy after LH crash. Was quite funny but a shame it happened especially the cheers. Hopefully the were more for the fact it meant kimi was on the podium.

    For atmosphere and just the feel of the place its a MUST for any F1 fan. So please I made the effort. Good luck and enjoy it.

    Oh thursday has a pitwalk for 3 day ticket holders. I didnt know this unfortunately.

  6. christopher (sennaboy3)
    5th December 2009, 12:09

    Looking to get tickets for 2010 and was wondering if anyone could tell me where it is best to sit to get onto the track after the race? Was thinking about sitting in the Parabolica, can anyone comment on stands 21a,b,c,d,e? Any good campsites nearby? Thanks for any help!

  7. One year ago this week I fulfilled a forty-year dream by visiting Monza. There are really only two optimal times to visit this legendary track: the Italian Grand Prix Race Weekend – and the last half of December when most of Italy is ‘closed’ for Christmas observations. Our December 2008 visit was quiet, with the ability to hear the ghosts of the past who have raced this circuit, not only the current track but also the historic abandoned oval. The banking on the oval is so steep one can hardly walk it, the track surface is crumbling with age, and the ancient Armco is rusty and falling down. But (as others have termed it) a solitary walk around the track is a “sacred” experience for all who love motorsport. I’ve been to Monaco, Watkins Glen and Indy, but Monza is like no other venue in the world. Even empty of the countless tifosi, a stroll down “Via Enzo Ferrari – Engenere” as one enters the Monza Parc, one’s first glimpse of the famous round Victory Stand, seeing the flyovers covered with Compari advertising where the new track crosses the old one, watching the sublime yellow sunset as it fades in the winter mist – absolutely magical. In many ways it was an even greater experience than my subsequent visit to the Scuderia in Maranello. All hail Monza – the grandest Grand Prix venue !

  8. Me and a friend are going to Monza for the 2010 GP. We’re planning to stay on the Monza park campsite – the one affiliated with the circuit itself.

    Has anyone had any experience with this campsite? We can’t seem to get hold of them to make a reservation.

    Any help would be massively appreciated

  9. christopher (sennaboy3)
    20th February 2010, 12:30

    Chris B, pls let me know if you have any success getting hold of them…I would also like to crash here for the GP. cheers!

  10. It’s quite possibly because they have such a small capacity for camping compared to the number of grand prix visitors they are full already. The positioning of the track is in a built up area surrounded by public parks. It’s like trying to find a campsite in Richmond? Hotels in Milan are plentyful, only 15 miles from Monza but you need to book quickly, the entire contents of Monaco head for Monza F1 – it might even be a good weekend parked on the route, you’ll get P for porsch, L for Lambo all the way to spell PLAYBOY weekend away in the Supercar! As for campsites, well let me know if you make contact?

  11. Dear all, we are off to the Italian Grand Prix in September this year, really looking forward to it! We have a 3 day ticket and will be arriving at Milan Malpensa around 11.30 on Friday morning, we then need to get to Milan to drop off our bags then get to Monza. Now I’ve done some research and it looks like a big logistical task. Currently im thinking that we need to get a train from malpensa airport to the train station (not the centrale) then get taxi to subway to get to hotel, then subway to centrale train station then stop at Lissone-Muggiò near Monza then walk for another half an hour. This all seems a bit much, any ideas how I can make getting around cheaper, quicker and easier!! Thanks, replies will be much appreciated!

  12. I got tickets in the first chicane…6B. I have heard horror stories about how long it can take to get to your seats if you take the wrong entrance. Do anyone know which one I should use and if they are well marked. My first trip to Monza should I’m already getting excited.

    1. I sat there in 2007. I don’t remember getting to it being a problem in terms of getting lost, but it is very busy and the pathways aren’t huge so I would leave plenty of time.

      1. Thanks Keith…much the same as Montreal I expect, the pathways are very crowded there. They are lined with vendors which makes matters worse. By the way, do you know what is up with the official Monza site? It seems to be down.

        1. No idea, sorry.

  13. Jimmy Desperado
    20th April 2010, 23:04

    Hi All. We are going to Monza 2010 for the 3 days. Does anyone know if they have radio commentary in English that you can listen to on a portable radio like at Silverstone? Or do I need to get KangerooTV

    Many thanks.

    PS also does anyone know if you can get some kind of transport from Monza straight to Malpensa Airport to save having to go back into Milan?

  14. Hi All.

    I’m planning on going to Monza this year. Can’t decide which tickets to go for, my budget it kinda limited but reasonable if it’s value for money with is why I’m asking this question.

    Are the general admission tickets value for money at Monza? My previous F1 experience has been at Silverstone which in my view has superb GA facilities, probably even better for this year. I can’t imagine Monza is up to the same standard, but someone please correct me if I have it wrong.

    The other thing is a non-F1 fan friend will be with me so I have to keep that in mind. Other than GA I’m also considering the entry or exit to the parabolica. I guess this can be a good spot to watch the cars work, but I don’t want to be watching the cars flash by for 1h15m, to me thats not value.

    Does anyone have any advice for me? Thanks

  15. Hi everybody!
    Going to Monza for my second time!
    Bought tickets for 26A (opposite the pit/grid) this time too.
    I´m planning to visit Maranello on thursday even this time.

  16. Hey gang…

    Anyone have a track map or can show me areas that GA tickets can watch from? Ive read most of your posts and it sounds like the exit of paraboica is a good place to watch from with GA on race day? Where else should I go?

    Im a professional photographer but obviously credentials are damn near impossible to get. Any advice for GA ticket holders would be phenomenal!

  17. hey folks, im looking for some info regarding tickets for the 2011 monza GP. firstly could anyone reccomend a reputable outlet to purchase tickets from and secondly im thinking of buying the general admission tickets as most of the others seem pretty expensive, but not sure where is accesible with the GA tickets and also when do tickets go on sale?

    many thanks

    1. Hi turbo,

      I was at Monza at the weekend, I had a stand ticket but I was somewhat surprised at how much general admission areas there are and how close it is to the track in some places. I have some photos that I will upload some time this week if I get the chance.

      I always figure the best place to buy tickets from is the circuit itself. I hvae no idea when theyll be on sale though.

      Hope this helps,

      1. hi tj, thanks for info..good to hear that you can get close to the action with GA tickets! ive got plenty of time to get things planned but wouldnt want to miss the tickets going on sale.. will keep my eyes peeled on the circuit website.. thanks again

  18. I was trying to decide on whether to get tickets for grandstand 6C or 8, does anyone have any suggestions?

  19. Well, I went to Monza last year (2011) and it was absolutely amazing. OK, it maybe doesn’t have the top class facilities of some of the newer tracks (the port-a-loos leave ALOT to be desired), but nothing can compare to the atmosphere there and you get a real sense of the history of the place.

    We found that it was a little difficult to get to the track on the Thursday but Friday, Saturday and Sunday was no problem because of the free buses to the circuit (well, on Sunday there was a free train that takes you right to the circuit – if you’re staying in Milan that is). Be prepared for a pretty long walk through Monza park to the actual circuit entrance though. Oh and if you’re using public transport to get to the circuit on Thursday make sure you validate your bus or train ticket – we got caught out on that and it put a real dampener on the day.

    We had the pit walk-about on the Thursday. It was great to walk down the pitlane but if you’re hoping to get a driver’s autograph while you’re there, well good luck to you…most drivers only barely came out for a few minutes, signed 5 or 6 autographs then went back in again. The whole thing was very badly organised.

    Friday was great; I tried to visit as many grandstands as I could – 6C is pretty good if you want good pictures and videos, plus you’re right over the old track which is pretty awesome – then I went to the Ascari grandstand (16) which I wasn’t to keen on but it’s pretty cool to see the cars go through there so fast – impossible to get good pictures though – and finally, Parabolica (22) was really good and the tickets aren’t too expensive for there either plus it’s a covered grandstand.

    Anyways, my “official” grandstand for the weekend was actually grandstand 5 (Piscina). Again not great if you want amazing pictures (though you are right opposite the pitlane exit so there is some opportunity for photos) but an absolutely fantastic place to see the real speed of these machines – they’re more or less doing top speed when they go past…the real reason I bought tickets here though was because I wanted to be on the main straight so I could run down it after the race – however, for some reason, the marshalls didn’t open our gate to let us out at the end of the race and we all ended up having to climb over a fence instead – it was definitely worth it though – especially considering what an avid Alonso/Ferrari fan I am…the feeling of running down the main straight at Monza with my Ferrari flag in tow while the Italian National Anthem plays in all its glory is one I’m not likely to forget in a hurry.

    One thing I’ll say that I wasn’t keen on at Monza though was the wasps – there is a pretty bad wasp problem there…in fact there was a nest right behind where we were sitting. It wasn’t a huge problem but just that people should be aware that such a problem exists.

    So that’s my story…if anyone wants any more info they can feel free to ask me and if you are going to Monza this year, I envy you, you’re going to have a great time :)

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