Turn one, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Track walk: Turn-by-turn guide to the Las Vegas Strip Circuit

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The Las Vegas Strip Circuit consists of 17 corners spread out over 6.2 kilometres of city roads and a purpose-built section which houses the pit lane, paddock and opening corners.

It is the second-longest Formula 1 track, behind Spa-Francorchamps, and one of eight anticlockwise venues on the calendar. Five of them are street circuits, and the season ends with three anticlockwise tracks in a row.

Officially there are 11 left-hand and six right-hand corners. The 1.9 kilometre flat-out section down the city’s famous Strip (which is between turns 12 and 14 in the lap) is the second longest full-throttle section of a circuit in F1. That trumps the 1.875km stretch between the exit of La Source and braking for Les Combes at Spa, but comes short of the 20-corner Baku circuit where drivers can go at least 2km at full throttle from the exit of turn 16 before approaching turn one.

The highest speed achieved in F1 so far this year was by Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas at the Mexican Grand Prix, going through the Mexico City speed trap at 361.9kph. Teams’ predictions of what speeds will be possible in Las Vegas have varied, with 350kph definitely possible but matching the 359kph of Monza or 361kph of the high altitude Mexico track might not be in reach.

It is expected that 4.84km of the lap in Las Vegas will be covered while at full throttle, equating to 66% of the lap time. In distance covered at full throttle as a percentage of the whole lap that puts the track only behind Jeddah, Bahrain and Monza, but there are eight circuits where F1 drivers spend a greater proportion of the lap time flat-out.

At the end of the Strip is one of the lap’s five braking zones, only three of which are expected to be significant braking events.

Las Vegas Strip circuit track map
Las Vegas Strip circuit track map

Start/finish area

Starting grid, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Starting grid, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

This is the first bespoke section of track, on an area of land that was mostly grit and sand before F1 bought it for a nine-figure sum. The pit lane runs alongside on the left, and does the same into turns one and two where it rejoins the track.

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Turns one and two

Turn one, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn one, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turn one (also pictured top at night) is the first of three heavy braking zones in the lap and is a hairpin that leads directly into the minimal direction change of turn two which drivers will accelerate out of for the very short blast to turn three.

Turn two exit, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn two exit, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Pit exit

Pit exit (reverse), Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Pit exit (reverse), Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Drivers will want to hug the barrier on the right as they increase their speed into turns three and four, and this is not only because it is the fastest way though the continual right-hander but also because the pit exit is on the left between turns two and three and therefore a wide turn-in could result in contact with an unsighted car exiting the pits.

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Turn three

Turn three, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn three, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turn three looks like one of few fairly quick corners, which opens up at its exit.

Turn three exit, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn three exit, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Koval lane straight

Koval lane, turn four to turn five, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Koval lane, turn four to turn five, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

After turn four is the first long straight of the lap, and at the end of it is the next heavy braking zone of turn five.

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Koval lane, turn four to turn five, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Koval lane, turn four to turn five, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turn five

Turn five, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn five, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

This 90-degree right-hander takes drivers into the section of track that goes around Madison Square Garden’s recently opened Sphere. F1 originally planned for turn five to be a 180-degree corner in the style of turn four at the Sochi Autodrom. However a slower design was chosen instead.

Turn six

Turn six, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn six, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Drivers will experience the first half of the planned left-hander, so taking them around one-quarter of the Sphere, before a slow-speed section.

Turn six, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn six, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turns seven, eight and nine

Turn nine, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn nine, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

To navigate the next quarter of the Sphere, there is a sharp left-hander followed swiftly by a right-hander. From there the drivers soon arrive at turn nine which starts off tight but gets wider as it straightens out and heads onto Sands Avenue.

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Turn 10 and 11

Turn 10, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 10, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Sands Avenue snakes right then left – two corners which would have been tackled at much higher speeds under the original design – and the track follows it for turns 10 and 11 and with increasing speed.

Turn 10 (reverse), Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 10 (reverse), Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turn 12

Turn 12, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 12, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

This left-hander has some run-off due to the speed drivers approach it at. It is likely to be one of the most important corners on the track due to the long, high-speed section which follows it.

Drivers go around the Venetian Resort and onto the Strip, the road that this whole circuit was designed to include and also one of the longest full-throttle stretches on the F1 calendar.

Turn 12, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 12, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

The Strip

The Strip, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
The Strip, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

On the Strip the drivers rush past several casinos, including the Caesars Palace hotel that F1 raced in the car park of in 1981 and 1982, the Bellagio fountain and Paris Las Vegas with its replica Eiffel Tower copy.

The Strip, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
The Strip, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turn 13

Turn 13, The Strip, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 13, The Strip, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

This is a high-speed kink in The Strip that will be taken at full throttle and is arguably less of a challenge than what follows, which is the barriers on either side shifting to the right mid-straight to channel the drivers into the lanes on the right of what would usually be a very wide road if F1 was not racing there.

Turns, 14, 15 and 16

Turns 14 to 16, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turns 14 to 16, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

The third heavy braking zone after 1.9km of increasing speeds leads into a left-right-left chicane and E Harmon Avenue. Drivers go past Planet Hollywood as they exit the Strip.

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Turn 16 exit (reverse), Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 16 exit (reverse), Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

Turn 17

Turn 17 and pit lane entrance, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023
Turn 17 and pit lane entrance, Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 2023

After blasting along E Harmon Avenue, there’s a high-speed left-hander to tackle which will feature a change in asphalt since this is the newly built section. The pit entrance is at the apex of turn 17, which means drivers have to make sure they have the inside line if they have other cars nearby and that they brake hard as they enter the pit lane. It is the last corner of the lap, with the timing line just beyond the exit.

2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix

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Author information

Ida Wood
Often found in junior single-seater paddocks around Europe doing journalism and television commentary, or dabbling in teaching photography back in the UK. Currently based...

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17 comments on “Track walk: Turn-by-turn guide to the Las Vegas Strip Circuit”

  1. I understand the final Sphere surrounding section configuration is probably because of non-existent runoff space caused by Monorail, meaning that with the original plan a concrete wall would immediately await in an event of losing car control.
    However, I wish T8 had a slighter angle as a compromise & I especially dislike the T12 & 14 apex curbs that are just like the one at Baku’s T15, so I wish they weren’t in place to allow for more flowing driving lines, although the track is fast anyway (I reckon the outright third-fastest behind Monza & Jeddah).

  2. What track design genius decided to have pit out right in the middle/exit of turn 1?

    Probably from the same think tank that forgot to check race time temperatures for Las Vegas in November…

    1. Same track design genius as Korea (shudders)

      Hastily devised pit-exit rule incoming…

  3. Pretty much nothing but walls…

    Drive safely drivers!

  4. Probably the best street track or the 2nd best behind Baku on the calendar.

    Also, I’m happy it’s a real street track, and not just a city track.

  5. So the pit exit is at the external side of the corner, that is indeed not ideal. Is there any other circuit with such pit exit?

    1. Interior rather than exterior & not the only circuit.

  6. Interesting to see how this circuit is going to be in real racing action. The layout seems “ok” for a street venue,with the speeds they’ll reach being quite high.

    From the gallery, the width of the circuit seems to be a bit worse than i expected personally (especially the koval lane seems way too tight),but of course we’ll have to wait and see it in action.

  7. some racing fan
    15th November 2023, 20:31

    I think this race cound definitely produce good racing. This race will probably be more Baku than Monaco.

    1. some racing fan
      15th November 2023, 20:32

      *I think this track will produce good racing

    2. only if you consider drs push of a button highway passing to be good racing as i think thats all that its going to be.

  8. both playing it on the game as well as seeing the images it just looks like such an awful, dull and uninspiring track that features nothing of any interest.

    like miami, sochi & valencia when it drops off the calender it will be a track that nobody thinks of again.

    1. I’ve found the track enjoyable to drive on the game expect for T12 & 14 with annoying entry curbs.

  9. Long straights and big braking zones. With every new track you just have to wonder why the old Hockenheim track had to change…

  10. Given how cold it’s expected to be perhaps turn 6 should be reinstated as the long, fast, sweeping left hander it was intended to be. Maybe then the drivers would be able to generate heat into the tyres.

  11. Nice colourful photos from XPB Images. Slightly over-processed but catchy.

    That circuit track map is sooo bad. It doesn’t even show the start/finish line!

  12. Given as i saw Charles yesterday racing in Esports F1 2023 he hits the wall often it’s possible he will do this in Real too (but not only Charles but the whole field)

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