- Circuit type Race
- Circuit Length 4.326kms
- Circuit Turns 7
- Circuit Direction Clockwise
- Unused Since 1987 (A1 1995)
- Established 1969
|First race||Austrian Grand Prix||August 16, 1970||Jacky Ickx (BEL)||full results|
|Last race||Austrian Grand Prix||July 3, 2016||Lewis Hamilton (GBR)||full results|
Set into an Austrian hillside, the Osterreichring has gone down in F1 folklore as one of the sport's most exciting circuits. Dramatic elevation changes and super-fast sweeping curves made it a real drivers' circuit and the small run-off areas and ludicrously-narrow pit straight made it exceptionally dangerous. Most dangerous of all was the 180 degree Boschkurve, where close barriers all the way around the outside loomed ominously to punish the slightest mistake, hard. Despite the safety concern, which contributed to F1 abandoning the circuit after 1987, the only F1 death was in 1975 when Mark Donohue crashed during practice. In 1995 F1 returned to the venue, then known as the A1 Ring, but the race took place on a completely rebuilt and neutered version of the track designed by Hermann Tilke.
After Red Bull took over ownership of the circuit the pit buildings and grandstands were demolished in 2004 - a year after the circuit last held a grand prix - but after the track was renovated at a cost of nearly £60m and reopened in 2011, Red Bull said the circuit was ready to host Formula One once again. Plans to add it to the 2013 calendar never materialised but the Austrian Grand Prix will return to the circuit now known as the Red Bull Ring in 2014.