There was a time when Formula One’s “world championship” was really anything but, with just a token flyaway at the Indianapolis 500 (not contested by most Grand Prix outfits) the only race outside of Europe.
A concentrated effort to take in genuine trips to North America grew to include South American voyages as well as races in Japan and Australia which would fast become a staple of the calendar. We’re now perfectly used to the calendar encompassing tracks from the Middle-East and Asia, too.
The majority of these circuits are brought to you courtesy of Hermann Tilke, F1’s favourite designer, who cut his teeth on the “new” nine-corner A1 Ring almost 20 years ago and is now the brains behind every new facility we see.
Unfortunately for Mr. Tilke, he’ll have to go some way to have a circuit which matches Europe’s finest.
This weekend sees the F1 circus roll into Belgium, to take on Spa-Francorchamps. A fine example of what Europe brings to the table, and the perfect excuse to look at the best tracks the Continent has to offer.