Okayama International Circuit is a popular race track located in Mimasaka, Okayama Prefecture, Japan. This iconic circuit is known for its challenging turns and high-speed straights, and it has been hosting various international racing events for more than 30 years. In this article, we will discuss the history of Okayama International Circuit, its layout and features, and some of the notable racing events that have taken place at this iconic track.
Okayama International Circuit was first opened in 1990 as a replacement for the outdated Tsukuba Circuit. The new track was built with the goal of hosting international racing events, and it quickly became a popular destination for motorsport enthusiasts around the world. The circuit was designed by German engineer Hermann Tilke, who is also responsible for designing other world-renowned tracks such as the Bahrain International Circuit, the Sepang International Circuit, and the Circuit of the Americas.
The first major international racing event that took place at Okayama International Circuit was the Pacific Grand Prix, which was part of the 1994 Formula One season. The event was won by Damon Hill, who was driving for the Williams-Renault team. The circuit continued to host the Pacific Grand Prix for two more years before the race was discontinued.
In 2003, the circuit underwent a major renovation, which included the addition of a new pit complex and the extension of the main straight. The new pit complex is now one of the most modern and well-equipped in the world, and it has helped to make Okayama International Circuit one of the most popular destinations for international racing events.
The Okayama International Circuit has a length of 3.7 kilometers (2.3 miles) and features 11 turns. The track is designed to be challenging for drivers, with a combination of high-speed straights and tight corners. The circuit is also known for its undulating terrain, which adds to the challenge for drivers.
The track features a variety of corners, including hairpins, fast sweeping turns, and tight chicanes. The first corner is a hairpin, which is followed by a series of fast turns leading into a long straight. The final sector of the circuit features a number of tight corners, which require precision driving and careful braking.
In addition to the track itself, Okayama International Circuit features a number of other facilities that make it an attractive destination for motorsport enthusiasts. The circuit has a large grandstand that can seat up to 30,000 spectators, as well as a number of VIP hospitality suites. There is also a large paddock area, which is used to store the teams’ cars and equipment.
Okayama International Circuit has hosted a number of notable international racing events over the years. In addition to the Pacific Grand Prix, which was held in the mid-1990s, the circuit has hosted a number of other high-profile races.
One of the most popular events that takes place at Okayama International Circuit is the Super GT, which is a touring car championship that features some of the top drivers and teams from Japan and around the world. The circuit has hosted the Super GT since the championship’s inception in 1994, and it remains one of the most popular races on the calendar.
Another notable event that takes place at Okayama International Circuit is the Super Formula, which is a single-seater championship that features some of the most talented drivers from around the world. The circuit has been hosting the Super Formula since 2003, and it is a popular destination for both drivers and fans.