The Most Legendary Racetracks in the World

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Motorsports are about more than fast cars, winners, and losers. Anyone can get behind the wheel of a new Corvette and put their foot down. What makes racing special are the stories, and every great story has a setting. There are many different racetracks beloved by automotive enthusiasts for different reasons. However, some of these tracks stand above the rest for their famous reputations and iconic features. We’ll take a trip around the world in the following article to tell you all about some of the world’s most legendary tracks.

The Most Legendary Racetracks in the World

Iconic Suzuka International Racing Course – Japan

Suzuka International Racing Course
Suzuka International Racing Course/Image Credit: Formula One

First used back in 1962, the Suzuka International Racing Course has decades of history of thrilling races. The track was originally built to be a test track for Honda, but ambitions grew, and the course played host to its first Grand Prix in 1987. Running a length of just over two miles, the circuit can hold up to 155,000 spectators. It sets the stage for one of the most exciting events on the racing calendar.

Formula One drivers and fans alike widely regard Suzuka International Racing Course as one of the most enjoyable tracks to race on. The treacherous 130R corner is famous for the difficulty it poses to drivers. It tests the skills of even the most experienced in the sport.

Challenging Nürburgring Nordschleife – Germany

Nürburgring Nordschleife racetrack/Image Credit: Nürburgring

Known to fans as ‘The Green Hell,’ Nürburgring Nordschleife lives up to its name with the challenging conditions that it presents to drivers who dare to take on this course. A whopping 154 corners make this course one of the most difficult for drivers to navigate. It always delivers exciting races full of twists and turns.

Because of the difficulty, drivers often compete to post the best lap time going around the track. As of this writing, the fastest time logged by a production car was set in June of 2021 by a Porsche 911 GT2 RS. With 700 hp on-tap, Lars Kern set the new record at 6:43.300 minutes.

This course also has the distinction of being available for public access. That means that anybody with a road-legal vehicle can test their abilities on the track when a race isn’t taking place. Even you can have a chance to get in on the action.

Famous Laguna Seca – United States

WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca/Image Credit: Monterey County, CA

Located near Salinas and Monterey, California, WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca is perhaps America’s most internationally renowned course, with fans across the globe. All sorts of different events are held here. Events range from superkarts to sports car races and so much more, treating fans to a variety of different spectacles.

The course takes its name from the Spanish words for ‘dry lagoon,’ referring to the fact that this course was built around a dried-up lakebed. That history gives this course a unique shape, filled with a range of curves and turns that test drivers’ abilities in unique ways. The downhill-plunging corkscrew portion of the course is known for the high-speed challenges that it pits drivers against.

Autodromo Nazionale Monza – Italy

Autodromo Nazionale Monza racetrack/Image Credit: Autodromo Nazionale Monza

Home to the Italian Grand Prix, Autodromo Nazionale Monza has long been one track that race fans enthusiastically look forward to seeing events at. The unique layout of the track and stands provide spectators with excellent close-up views of the action. This setup has made it one of racing’s most beloved sites.

The oldest purpose-built racing course in continental Europe, the Autodromo Nazionale Monza has a storied history. The annual Italian Grand Prix has been held every year since it began in 1949, with the exception of the 1980 running, which was held on another course due to Monza undergoing refurbishment.

Historic Spa-Francorchamps – Belgium

Aerial view of the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps/Image Credit: Spa Francorchamps

With a history that dates all the way back to 1925, Spa-Francorchamps has been creating memories for Formula One fans for years. One of the most famed events that occurs here is the Spa 500. Because this racetrack was made from public roads that used to be in the area, there are plenty of unique turns that make this race an exciting spectacle to behold.

Along with the track itself, just as well-loved is the scenery that surrounds Spa-Francorchamps. The lovely countryside creates a picturesque locale. It sets the perfect mood for the adrenaline-boosting races that are held here and adds to this track’s legendary image.

Elite Circuit de la Sarthe – France

Circuit de la Sarthe/Image Credit: Edward Loh

Arguably the most iconic track in the world, Circuit de la Sarthe has been an annual fixture on the motorsports calendar since 1949. Incorporating both local roads and specially-made tracks, this course is home to the Le Mans 24-Hour Race. Yeah, THAT Le Mans.

Drivers take up to 85% of this course at full throttle, pushing the limits of their vehicles. Because drivers must also slow down for the sharp curve through the village of Mulsanne on this track, the conditions create extreme wear and tear on their engines and drivetrain components, making this one of the most difficult races in the world.

There you have it. Those are our picks for the most legendary racetracks in the world. Of course, there are a lot more tracks we could have mentioned and we’re sure you have your own suggestions. If you want to join the conversation, don’t forget to add us on Facebook or Twitter! We’d love to hear from you!

Brandon Cantrell

Brandon Cantrell

At over a dozen vehicles, Brandon has lost count of the cars, trucks, and motorcycles that have graced his driveway. So, when he got into digital marketing, the automotive industry was a natural fit. Brandon now has almost a half-decade of experience writing and editing various forms of automotive content.