I started watching motorsport in my early childhood, in 1989 to be exact when I was 7 years old. My first love was Moto GP, and then Formula 1.
From 1990- 94 was the pinnacle of Moto GP in my book where Wayne Rainey, Kevin Schwantz (my hero) and Michael Doohan (sometimes Wayne Gardner) form a close rivalry between them. But it was always Rainey and Schwantz, Doohan had no chance when those two were around. Doohan only won 5 titles after Rainey and Schwantz had retired, fact. I still remember the day when Rainey’s bike fell on his body at Misano and read the news the next day, I was devastated as I was following the 2 American riders seriously. Then Schwantz won the title in ’93 and I stopped following after his retirement in 1995.
I was also a huge fan of Ayrton Senna during his peak between 1988-1991, watching every race whenever it was live on my local TV station. The Senna – Prost rivalry is still the greatest rivalry in motorsport history to this day, and when I watched his fatal crash at Imola live on TV in 1st May 1994 I was very distraught by it and did a speech about it in my school. I stopped watching F1 soon after that and only became invested again in the sport with the emergence of Fernando Alonso in 2005.
So, I love motorsport more than I love football, so here are my Top 10 list of the best motorsport event in the world that I would love to visit in the future.
Le Mans 24 hours
The 24 Hours of Le Mans (French: 24 Heures du Mans) is the world’s oldest active sports car race in endurance racing, held annually since 1923 near the town of Le Mans,France. It is one of the most prestigious automobile races in the world and is often called the “Grand Prix of Endurance and Efficiency”. The event represents one leg of the Triple Crown of Motorsport; other events being the Indianapolis 500, and the Monaco Grand Prix.
The race is organized by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) and runs on the Circuit de la Sarthe, which contains a mix of closed public roads and a specialist racing circuit, in which racing teams have to balance speed with the cars’ ability to race for 24 hours without sustaining mechanical damage.
Since 2012, the 24 Hours of Le Mans has been a part of the FIA World Endurance Championship. In 2016, it will be the 3rd round of the season.
The race has over the years inspired imitating races all over the globe, popularizing the 24-hour format at places like Daytona, Nürburgring, Spa-Francorchamps, and Bathurst. TheAmerican Le Mans Series and Europe’s Le Mans Series of multi-event sports car championships were spun off from 24 Hours of Le Mans regulations. Other races include the Le Mans Classic, a race for historic Le Mans race cars of years past held on the Circuit de la Sarthe, a motorcycle version of the race which is held on the shortened Bugatti version of the same circuit, a kart race (24 Heures Karting), a truck race (24 Heures Camions), and a parody race 24 Hours of LeMons. – (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/24_Hours_of_Le_Mans )
My reasons to go: Simply THE best motorsport event in the world, even better than any Formula 1 event, because of its diversity in cars, categories, manufacturers and engine sounds. The track is part permanent circuit and part public road that makes it one of a kind, and challenging corners like the Prosche Curves. It’s 24 hours so I’m imagining camping by the track side while listening to the roaring engine sounds will be a lifetime experience.
Formula 1 Monaco Grand Prix
The Monaco Grand Prix (French: Grand Prix de Monaco) is a Formula One motor race held each year on the Circuit de Monaco. Run since 1929, it is widely considered to be one of the most important and prestigious automobile races in the world and, with the Indianapolis 500 and the 24 Hours of Le Mans, forms the Triple Crown of Motorsport. The circuit has been called “an exceptional location of glamour and prestige”
The event was part of the pre-Second World War European Championship and was included in the first World Championship of Drivers in 1950. It was designated the European Grand Prix two times, 1955 and 1963, when this title was an honorary designation given each year to one Grand Prix race in Europe. Graham Hill was known as “Mr. Monaco”due to his five Monaco wins in the 1960s. Brazil‘s Ayrton Senna won the race more times than any other driver, with six victories, winning five races consecutively between 1989and 1993. Fernando Alonso is the only driver to have won the race in consecutive years for different constructors, winning for Renault in 2006 and McLaren in 2007. – (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monaco_Grand_Prix)
My reasons to go: The most glamorous Formula 1 event in the calendar in terms of spectacle and entertainment, this track is the closest you can be to cars racing at 300km/h. Seeing the cars going through the tunnel and by the ocean must be an experience to cherish forever, and you can only see it at Monaco.
The Indianapolis 500 is an automobile race held annually at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana, an enclave suburb of Indianapolis, Indiana. The event is held overMemorial Day (originally Decoration Day) weekend, which is typically the last weekend in May. It is contested as part of the Verizon IndyCar Series, the top level of American Championship Car racing, an open-wheel formula colloquially known as “Indy Car Racing”.
The event, billed as The Greatest Spectacle in Racing, is considered part of the Triple Crown of Motorsport, which comprises three of the most prestigious motorsports events in the world. The official attendance is not disclosed by Speedway management, but the permanent seating capacity is upwards of 250,000, and infield patrons raise the race-day attendance to approximately 300,000. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indianapolis_500)
My reasons to go: One of the most iconic and earliest racing event in North America, this event has also one of the biggest attendance in the motorsport world. I’d love to go to this event simply because of the speed these open wheel racing cars go though non- stop (except for pit stops) around the oval circuit with average speed in excess over 200mph.
(photo source: http://www.autoblog.com/tag/daytona+500/)
The Daytona 500 is a 500-mile-long (805 km) NASCAR Sprint Cup Series motor race held annually at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. It is the first of two Sprint Cup races held every year at Daytona, the second being the Coke Zero 400. It is one of the four restrictor plate races on the Sprint Cup schedule. The inaugural Daytona 500 was held in 1959 coinciding with the opening of the speedway and since 1982, it has been the season-opening race of the Cup series.
The Daytona 500 is regarded as the most important and prestigious race on the NASCAR calendar, carrying by far the largest purse. Championship points awarded are equal to that of any other Sprint Cup race. It is also the series’ first race of the year; this phenomenon is virtually unique in sports, which tend to have championships or other major events at the end of the season rather than the start. Since 1995, U.S. television ratings for the Daytona 500 have been the highest for any auto race of the year, surpassing the traditional leader, the Indianapolis 500 which in turn greatly surpasses the Daytona 500 in in-track attendance and international viewing. The 2006 Daytona 500 attracted the sixth largest average live global TV audience of any sporting event that year with 20 million viewers. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daytona_500)
My reasons to go: If you grew up in the 90s like I did, you should know that Daytona was the best and most popular arcade game at that time. For that reason alone I feel obliged to pay homage to the actual event someday.
The Bathurst 1000 (currently branded as the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000 for sponsorship reasons) is a 1,000-kilometre (620 mi) touring car race held annually on theMount Panorama Circuit in Bathurst, New South Wales, Australia. It is currently run as a championship event for V8 Supercars.
Widely regarded as the pinnacle of motorsport in Australia, the Bathurst 1000 is colloquially known as The Great Race among motorsport fans and media. The race concept originated with the 1960 Armstrong 500 at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, before being relocated to Bathurst in 1963 and continuing there in every year since. The race was traditionally run on the Labour Day long weekend in New South Wales, in early October. Since 2001, the race is run on the weekend after the long weekend, normally the second weekend in October. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bathurst_1000)
My reasons to go: One of the most famous racing event in Australia, the sound of the V8 and beautiful scenery including its rich history makes it one of the must-go racing events in the world.
Formula 1 Belgian Grand Prix
The Belgian Grand Prix (Dutch: Grote Prijs van België; French: Grand Prix de Belgique; German: Großer Preis von Belgien) is an automobile race, part of the Formula OneWorld Championship. The first national race of Belgium was held in 1925 at the Spa region’s race course, an area of the country that had been associated with motor sport since the very early years of racing. To accommodate Grand Prix motor racing, the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps race course was built in 1921 but it was only used for motorcycle racing until 1924. After the 1923 success of the new 24 hours of Le Mans in France, the Spa 24 Hours, a similar 24-hour endurance race, was run at the Spa track.
Since inception, Spa-Francorchamps has been known for its unpredictable weather. At one stage in its history it had rained at the Belgian Grand Prix for twenty years in a row. Frequently drivers confront a part of the course that is clear and bright while another stretch is rainy and slippery.
The Belgian Grand Prix was designated the European Grand Prix six times between 1925 and 1973, when this title was an honorary designation given each year to one grand prix race in Europe. It is one of the most popular races on the Formula One calendar, due to the scenic and historical Spa-Francorchamps circuit being a favorite of drivers and fans. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belgian_Grand_Prix)
My reason to go: One of the very very few racing circuits not designed by Hermann Tilke currently in the calendar. No need to say more.
Formula 1 Italian Grand Prix (Monza)
The Italian Grand Prix (Gran Premio d’Italia) is one of the longest running events on the Formula One calendar. The Italian Grand Prix was also one of the inaugural Formula One championship races in 1950, and has been held every year since then. The only other championship race for which this is true is the British Grand Prix, and the only other inaugural F1 races that are still on the calendar are the Monaco Grand Prix and the Belgian Grand Prix.
Every Formula One Italian Grand Prix since 1950 has been held at Monza except in 1980, when it was held at Imola. The Italian Grand Prix counted toward the European Championship from 1935 to 1938. It was designated the European Grand Prix seven times between 1923 and 1967, when this title was an honorary designation given each year to one grand prix race in Europe. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Italian_Grand_Prix)
My reasons to go: The Temple of Speed, Ferrari’s Mecca, the Tifosi, Parabolica…… spagetti and lasagna.
24 hours of Nurburgring
The 24 Hours Nürburgring is a 24-hour annual touring car and GT endurance racing event on the Nordschleife (north loop) of the Nürburgring in central Germany. Held since 1970, over 25 km (15.5 mi) lap length allows more than 200 cars and over 700 drivers to participate.
Officially called ADAC 24h Rennen Nürburgring in German (‘ADAC 24 hour Race Nürburgring’), it was introduced in 1970 by the ADAC as a real race, unlike the earlier endurance contests that covered 12, 24 (in 1961 and 1967), 36, 84 and even 96 hours, like the Marathon de la Route. This substitute for the Liége-Rome-Liége and Liége-Sofia-Liège rallies was held on the Nürburgring from 1965 to 1971.
It is similar to the Spa 24 Hours, which had been introduced in 1924, following the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The ADAC had held its first 1000 km Nürburgring sports car racing event in 1953. As the 1000 km Spa had been introduced in 1966, the 24h at the Ring gave both circuits a pair of endurance racing events at very long tracks, at least until Spa was shortened in the late 1970s. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/24_Hours_N%C3%BCrburgring)
My reasons to go: Similar to 24 hours of Le Mans in terms of occasion, this old circuit is one of the most difficult track to learn in any video games, and the scenery are simply stunning.
The Isle of Man TT
The International Isle of Man TT (Tourist Trophy) Race  is a motorcycle sport event held annually on the Isle of Man in May or June of each year since the inaugural race in 1907. The Isle of Man TT for many years was the most prestigious motor-cycle race in the world and also seen as the ultimate test for competitors and machines alike. The Isle of Man TT has been administered by the Auto-Cycle Union (ACU) (previously the Auto-Cycle Club) since 1907 and is currently managed since 2008 by ACU Events Ltd, a fully owned subsidiary of the ACU.
The Isle of Man TT has been traditionally run in a time-trial format on public roads closed for racing by the provisions of an Act of Tynwald (the parliament of the Isle of Man). The event consists of one week of practice sessions followed by one week of racing. It has been a tradition perhaps started by racing competitors in the early 1920s for spectators to tour theSnaefell Mountain Course on motor-cycles during the Isle of Man TT on “Mad Sunday,” an informal and unofficial sanctioned event held on the Sunday between ‘Practice Week’ and ‘Race Week.’
The first Isle of Man TT race was held on Tuesday 28 May 1907 and was called the International Auto-Cycle Tourist Trophy. The event was organised by the Auto-Cycle Club over 10 laps of the Isle of Man St John’s Short Course of 15 miles 1,470 yards for road-legal ‘touring’ motor-cycles with exhaust silencers, saddles, pedals and mud-guards. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isle_of_Man_TT)
My reasons to go: The greatest motorcycle racing event in the world, where only the truly brave and insane can participate in this road course, running through countryside, houses and coffee shops, this event has claimed the lives of many people trying to make their mark in the history book. When the great Valentino Rossi said its too dangerous, you ought to listen. (http://www.visordown.com/motorcycle-news–general-news/rossi-iom-tt-is-too-dangerous/22211.html)
Super GT Suzuka 1000km
(photo source: http://www.autogt.com/super-gt/super-gt-round-5-suzuka-updates/)
The 1000 km Suzuka (鈴鹿1000km) is an annual 1000-kilometer (620 mi) endurance race for sports cars held at the Suzuka Circuit (173 laps). It is the longest round of the Japanese Super GT championship, and the most prestigious race in the series.
The race was previously part of the All Japan Sports Prototype Championship, the forerunner to Super GT, and later hosted a round of the 1992 World Sportscar Championshipbefore these series were cancelled. After that the race has become part of many different series including the BPR Global GT Series from 1994 to 1996, the FIA GT Championshipfrom 1997 to 1998, and the Super Taikyu endurance series. In 2006, the race was integrated for the first time in the Super GT calendar. Previously, the race was open to JGTC/Super GT cars, but with only a handful of competitors from the Super GT entering. (Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1000_km_Suzuka)
My reasons to go: Probably the best racing circuit in Asia and possibly the world, this track always comes up with spectacular overtaking and drama because of its layout and challenging corners such as 130R. Super GT was held in Sepang couple of years back and I’ve been a big fan, but if I have to go to Japan to watch this event again, it has to be the Suzuka 1000km.
Do you agree with my list? If you have any suggestion you may write in the comment section below. Thanks for your time.