The top 10 things to experience during Formula 1 weekend in Austin
Sure, the grandstands are the main attraction at this weekend's Formula 1 Pirelli United States Grand Prix, but there are plenty of other high-octane experiences at the track that you might not know about yet.
Here are the top 10 things to check out while you're at Circuit of The Americas. And while you may be focused on getting your steps in, there's no need to exhaust yourself getting around the event. Internal shuttles are on-hand, running clockwise on a continuous loop.
1. Main Grandstand Thrill Zone
Between soaring high above the Circuit on the brand-new zip line, challenging your friends at COTA Karting, or learning about COTA's Driving Experience programs, this is the place for your inner adrenaline junkie.
2. Grand Plaza F1 Fanzone
Looking for an interactive F1 experience? Look no further. The Grand Plaza is the place to put your skills to the test with the Pit Stop and Reaction Challenges, race for the podium in F1 Esports, and more.
3. Fan Forum
Don’t just be a spectator — be a fan. Join the Fan Forum at Austin360 Amphitheater after the race on Sunday from 4-4:55 pm, where Formula 1 drivers and personnel will be onstage to talk shop with the fans.
4. Open Support Paddock
If a more authentic experience is your speed, the F3 Americas Series and FIA Formula 4 support paddock is your one-stop shop. Feel the heat of the rubber, smell the petrol, and get up close and personal with the racers and their powerful open-wheel racing machines as you live the life of a paddock insider.
5. Tower Tour
The COTA observation tower, a 251-foot rise to the top with sweeping views of the Circuit and the Central Texas landscape, is a must-see — and it's not just for VIPs. Starting at $35, it's a can't-miss to soak in the true majesty of the F1 experience. For $45, enjoy the view with expedited entry and a champagne toast.
6. Fitness Challenge
What does it really take to be an F1 driver? In the Fitness Challenge, fans can learn how F1 drivers achieve peak condition for racing and complete several activities to see how race-day ready they are.
7. Autograph Sessions
Here's your chance to meet the drivers behind the action. Autograph sessions take place on Saturday, October 20, starting at 10:45 am. Fans are encouraged to line the pit to get autographs from their favorite drivers from Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team, Aston Martin Red Bull Racing, and more.
8. F1 Vision
Take your race experience to the next level with F1 Vision, a device that offers real-time statistics, pit stop information, driver profiles, and more. Order ahead of your arrival to COTA to ensure there's one reserved, or purchase onsite for $109.
9. Kids Zone
Bringing along your pint-sized pit crew? Children 12 and under are invited to this exclusive area in the pit to get up close with their favorite drivers.
10. Pitstop Challenge
Think you have what it takes to cut it in the pit crew? The Pitstop Challenge gives six teams made up of six fans the chance to compete against each other in a knockout competition changing the Pirelli tires on an F1 car.