|Friday tickets, includes the Imagine Dragons concert.|
Kia Niro rental car. I took the picture for the license plate
as much as the tickets, so that we could remember which
Kia rental was ours in the huge parking lots!
If you are both a music fan and a Formula 1 fan, you might be familiar with the public TV live music show Austin City Limits. Believe it or not, ACL really is filmed in Austin. Speaking of Austin City Limits, that's about where we are at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) racetrack, southeast of Austin, out here past the airport. The track opened in 2012, and as the 10th different home of F1 racing in the US, it's the first of those tracks built specifically for F1. They say that everything is bigger in Texas, and from our first look around here, they're correct!
Some other places F1 has raced in the US include the Indianapolis motor speedway (which was in the news Monday for having been purchased by Roger Penske), downtown races in Long Beach CA, Phoenix AZ, Detroit MI, Dallas TX, a parking lot in Las Vegas, and other courses in Watkins Glen NY, and Riverside CA. Our NMS experience is limited in driving those tracks, but we're happy to report that we have driven at Watkins Glen, and both marched and run on the Indy oval in non-automobile modes in a half marathon and in a marching band. Hey, lapping at Indy is fun even on two feet...in the rain...with a trumpet!
|Enthusiastic fans? Check! Ferrari fan with race car hat!|
|Looking across the 360 Amphitheater seating (home of concerts) to the|
Military Outpost for veterans, which was a great place to hang out, and watch
the action on track from turn 18-19, plus free water, soda, and coffee.
We used Friday to walk around a lot of the entire track, not all of it, but a lot, say from turn 12 to 20, then turn 1-10. We watched the first practice session from the Outpost, and then as we walked around the track. The elevation change up hill from the start to turn 1 was way bigger than it looks on TV or on my racing video game! That must be an awesome experience to drive it on track too.
|From the Military Outpost, looking across the track to turn 1 grandstands.|
Drivers would be going up the hill on the far right, and back down
the hill on the left coming towards us.
|Hey, a big theater! Maybe Kool and the Gang will play here right after the race!|
|Practice 1, this car just went around turn 19 and is going away|
from us to the final corner. On the left of the track is the pit
entrance. We're walking around the track the way the
cars are going.
|One of the Haas cars is entering the pit road.|
|The COTA tower. They wanted 30 bucks to go to the top, so|
we stayed on the ground! You can see the tower from all over the
track and from miles away, so it's probably a good landmark to have.
|From the hill at turn 1, looking back to the main scoreboard,|
and the building that has the team garages, pits, and I'm sure
plenty of luxury suites for the teams.
|Looking back to the start/finish line. It's a big hill! There is |
a car under the Emirates sign across the track too.
|From the other side of turn 1, Vettel in the #5 Ferrari going downhill to turn 2|
|Ferrari passing a Red Bull|