Joining together a combination of long straights and daunting fast corners in a postcard-like backdrop the Spa race circuit flaunts itself as the track with the greatest length in the F1 calendar. At the first Grand Prix back in 1924, the circuit winded around an original 14,9 kilometers perimeter until its closure in 1970. Upon its re-opening in 1983, the track’s circumference was severely halved due to the danger such a lengthy distance entailed, nevertheless remaining the longest circuit on the calendar. Trailing the lines of the Ardennes Mountains, the Spa-Francorchamps circuit amusingly lies neither in the village of Spa neither in the village of Francorchamps but rather in between! The unpredictable weather affects the adherence of the track drenching it on one end while it remains « bone dry » on the other, making this characteristic another distinguishable feature of the Belgium Grand Prix.
- Track length 7,004 km
- Amount of laps 44
- Race distance 308,052 km
- Corners 19
- Top Speed 330 km/h (205 mph)
- Average Speed 233 km/h (145 mph)
- Winners/Hall of Fame
2009 Kimi Räikkönen 1:23:50.995
2010 Lewis Hamilton 1:29:04.268
2011 Sebastian Vettel 1:26:44.893
Lap record time: 1:45.108 - Kimi Räikkönen (2004)
Why the Belgium Grand Prix?
Bearing in mind that Spa-Francorchamps is one of the most historic Grand Prix’s in the Formula 1 Championship, it is mind blowing that only six men have won the race more than twice, giving the race a best of the best quality where only the most skilled drivers come out as victors. The unforeseen weather conditions which impact directly on the adherence of the track and consequently on the speed of the drivers, puts to the test the skills of all drivers and their respective team who find themselves confronted to F1’s most mechanically challenging corners such as the famed Eau-Rouge corner reputed for its high speed and sudden elevation change. A treat to the eye of all spectators, the Belgium Grand Prix’s position in the calendar implies that results at the race are also decisive in the outcome of the season.
- Population: 11.000
- Language: Flemish, French
- Currency: Euro
- Access :
Fly in from Brussels airport, or arrive in Brussels by Eurostar from central London
Hire a car to get to the track or catch a train to Liege and take a bus to the track.
A limited range of high-standard hotels can be found at Spa, the best often get booked up very early on. For visitors with cars it may be more suitable to stay in Spa’s neighboring villages where a broader range of guest houses and hotels are available and at a lower cost. Packages combining hotel stay and Spa F1 tickets giving access to the circuit and races may also be purchased. However, an alternative may be to opt in camping with many campsite venues available within a 15 minute drive from the circuit.
- Sightseeing and Activities
Visit the Casino Circus at Spa or treat yourself to some thermal-spa water treatments at the renowned local facilities. Do not hesitate in visiting the charming town of Liege located 50 kilometers away from Spa as well as Brussels if a city escapade is what you are seeking. The Spa-Francorchamps circuit also benefits from being in close proximity to the German and French borders, enabling visitors to circulate with much ease from one country to another where several of the regions old Grand Prix tracks still remain.
The town of Spa is not famed for its shopping however visitors may take the trip to Brussels and venture around the Dansaert neighborhood or the city’s famed Inno department store for a typical Belgian shopping experience. If there on a Sunday take the trip to Lieges’ La Batte Market which stretches out along 1.5 kilometers of quays and where locals shop for their weekly groceries and tourists may entertain themselves in observing the exotic birds, bric-à-brac, fish and household animal stalls.
Indulge in Belgian specialties such as at Spa’s local restaurants and street cafés. The hotels in Spa also have many restaurants; the range may however be quite limited to a French-Belgian cuisine. For a wider choice again venture out to the nearby bigger towns and cities of Lieges and Brussels for a range of international restaurants but where you may also sample world renowned Belgian chocolate at chocolate shops such as Neuhaus or Marcolini or even indulge in a « Chocolat Liegeois».
Nightlife in Spa is limited to gambling at the Casino or sipping a pint of local brew in one of the town’s bars and pubs. For a more lively nightlife, venture out to Brussels where nightclubs dot the city.
For more information, follow: http://www.belgium-grand-prix.com/en/f1-gp-home-belgium-195.html