In just little over a month, the 2018 Formula 1 season will draw to an end. Four races remain and we’re entering the final furlong of this rollercoaster of a year with the next stop at the very enjoyable United States Grand Prix in the grand city of Austin, Texas.
Back at Enstone, we’re already embracing the American spirit with burgers and giant milkshakes for days in our canteen and, to coax y’all into the Texan mood as well, we’re deploying a Michael Buffer-style introduction in 3, 2, 1...
Get ready to rumble - and all that - it’s time for the greatest travel blog… in the worrrrrrrrlllld.
Right, enough of that, let’s get to it. Austin is the state capital of Texas and the southernmost capital of the continental United States. It used to be called Waterloo (just like the ABBA song) until 1839 when it was renamed Austin to honour Stephen F. Austin.
It would be impossible to go to America and not talk about food. Well, it would be impossible to write a Renault Sport Formula One Team travel blog without discussing the local grub and here we are again. In the words of Oliver Twist, “oh food, wonderful food, marvellous food, glorious food!” We digress, but everything in America is bigger, sometimes better, and different in its own American-esque way. Tacos for breakfast is a thing in Austin, apparently. We’ll stick to our bacon baps (for the English side of the duel-national Renault operation) or a pain au chocolat and a double espresso for our French selves. Each to their own, as they say. Fast food, of course, is what makes the Americans tick with everything daftly large in portion sizes. A small burger will be enough to fill you for the entire Grand Prix weekend! Consuming three burgers will mean you’re eligible to be rolled down the hill from turn one for a giant game of skittles.
Enough of the belly rumblings and onto another area of interest for Austin…music. In fact, music is so popular in Austin, it’s officially dubbed “The Live Music Capital of the World”. There are more music venues per capita in Austin than any other city in America. While the sound of guitar, piano and even the saxophone is what livens up the city, a different method of sound will entertain Austinites on Sunday afternoon. Nope, not the whine of Britney Spears blaring out ‘Toxic’ or Bruno Mars’ never-ending ballads, but the sound of 20 Formula 1 cars hurtling up turn one at silly speed. That’s proper noise right there.
When conducting the detailed research for Grands Prix, you find out some interesting yet quite pointless facts about race venues. Some of our favourites for this weekend include: 1) Austin has 300 days of sunshine each year. 2) The city doesn’t have a professional sports team (yet has a 100,000 seat stadium for its college football team). 3) Austin is the fastest growing large city in the whole of the USA. 4) And finally, our personal favourite, the city has celebrated Eeyore’s (yes, the donkey from Winnie the Pooh) birthday since 1963, which typically occurs on the last Saturday of April.
The Circuit of the Americas is a drivers’ favourite. With a mountain for turn one, a snaking opening sector which goes left-right-left more than an American college marching band, a long straight and a unique stadium section, this one ticks a lot of boxes. It’s a very friendly circuit for spectating too with a number of cool vantage points and spots to watch one of sport’s greatest shows.
The US Grand Prix is certainly one of our favourites. Whatever you get up to, it’s sure to be a blast, but remember, portion sizes are triple what you’re used to!