06 June 2019 14:47
Motorsport Live looks at seating options for the American Grand Prix
The Texas State Capital of Austin is not your average Texan city. The ultra-conservative image of Texas is left at the door of this rapidly expanding university town, full of restaurants, bars, clubs, and some of the best concerts you’ll ever experience. It’s no wonder the city is referred to as the nation’s capital of live music.
The circuit itself is a design marvel. Created in a natural bowl, the racing enjoys many gradient changes, and many of the grandstands are able to offer views of 40-60% of the circuit. Many corners and features are influenced by the legendary corners of European circuits. You’re never far from home though, as the traditional “Southern Hospitality” seeps through the circuit, offering amazing mixes of food ranging from Texan BBQ, via Tex Mex, to Texan Fairground (we dare you to try a corndog!), and live music at almost every corner, you’ll be sure to have a great time.
For the start, finish, and pre-race
The Main Grandstand at the circuit is located alongside the grid. Unlike other circuits, there are different options amongst the stand at different price points for the fans. The prime views are delivered from the Club Level seats, encapsulating views of the final turn, grid, pits and the uphill drag race into Turn 1. Beyond that you can see over the pit building, and take in views of the rest of the circuit. To see all options, click here.
At track level, the Trackside Bleachers have a view of the grid and the run up to Turn 1. Watching the cars pile into that blind first corner is always exciting, and it’s a key passing place on the track. Just remember to pack the sun cream.
For action and overtaking
As an alternative for Turn 1, the Turn 12 Grandstand offers fantastic views of the end of the back straight (another key overtaking point), and then over Turns 13-16. This great value stand is divided into Lower and Upper sections. For those looking to sit on the corner, it’s section 9 of the grandstand that is situated on the apex.
Last year, in just the opening lap of the race Romain Grosjean braked too late into Turn 12 spinning Charles Leclerc’s Sauber. Meanwhile in the same moment Sebastian Vettel spun in Turn 13 trying to go around the outside of Daniel Ricciardo, and lit up his tyres spinning the car back around. The fans in Turn 12 Grandstand saw all of this!
For the more dynamic views
A great way to experience a dynamic view is from the Turn 1 Grandstand. The obvious thrill of the cars charging up hill towards you, then turning across the blind crest and going back down into Turn 2 makes these seats well worth their money. The gradient itself makes this an amazing and unique view of a race, but the hillside offers a great view over most of the rest of the circuit.
The stand is broken into Lower, Middle, and Upper rows, with each row offering more of a panoramic over such a magnificent circuit:
For the adventurous
COTA has some excellent General Admission areas around the site, including fantastic views of the cars as they make their way through turns 4 to 8. There is banking around the circuit making for great viewing areas. For other options, the area before Turn 1, and the banking on the inside of Turn 16 are also very popular locations.
For the that something special
The circuit has a number of hospitality options at the circuit, where you can be wined and dined whilst enjoying an amazing race. A popular option is the Owners Club situated on Turn 17. The unique building over two floors allows a 360-degree view of the circuit, with climate control to take shelter from the two extremes of Austin – hot sunshine or heavy rain. Catering includes breakfast, gourmet lunch, and afternoon snacks, while all your beverage needs (including wine, cocktail, beer, sodas and water) are all also included. On the Thursday there’s a VIP Pit Lane Walk for anyone with a 3-day ticket.
As always, the Paddock Club is available at the circuit. Operated by Formula 1, this exclusive top-of-the-range hospitality. Located in the suites above the pit garages, you are in the centre of the action. Snacks are available all day, but the foodie highlight is the finest gourmet lunch with fine wines, don’t forget the open bar, including Champagne. Entertainment continues in the suites between sessions, with live music, pit walks, and a guided paddock tour.
Looking for something a little more “in with the teams”? We also offer Paddock Club options hosted by McLaren and Aston Martin Red Bull Racing,. These options are created bespoke by the teams, and whilst offering the same Paddock Club highlights, they also offer a more team-centric experience of the race, including garage tours and meet and greets with drivers. See all hospitality options here.
All in all, the circuit is an amazing experience that excites the senses. The mixture of European and Texan styles meet together to create the most exciting combination of racing, food and drink, and an atmosphere of neutrals and fanatics that’s hard to compare! The locals certainly do give it all! The US Grand Prix runs from 1st – 3rd November 2019, with tickets available for both individual days and the weekend. Need some help? Get in touch!