Shanghai International Circuit


China's overall growth has had also a positive impact on how motorsports is perceived in the country, moving it into the focus of public attention. Calls for a Chinese, world-class race track quickly grew louder - and Tilke was up for the task.

A look at key parameters already shows that the Shanghai race track has taken Chinese scales and dimensions well into account: The stands along the 5.5 km long circuit can cater for up to 200.000 spectators. The top speed of nearly 330 km/h has also a record-breaking tendency. It becomes more than obvious that the Shanghai International Circuit is entitled to hold a Grade 1 FIA homologation (and the plenty of highlights of the circuit can confirm this).

State of the Art Circuit Design by Tilke

Our team built the Shanghai International Circuit from scratch on an undeveloped plot. The site is about 25 kilometers northwest of Shanghai. The actual racetrack is part of a harmonic design approach with well-balanced infrastructural elements such as the stands, the media centre and the paddock. Like all the other elements, the paddock can boast with the latest state-of-the-art solutions that motorsport has to offer. 

The 5.5 kilometre racing track is shaped like the Chinese character 'shang', which stands for 'high' or 'above'. Other symbols represented in the architecture originate from Chinese history, such as the team buildings arranged like pavilions in a lake to resemble the ancient Yuyan-Garden in Shanghai. Here, nature and technology are carefully used to create harmony between the elements.

Consequently, the Shanghai International Circuit has an excellent reputation worldwide. The protagonists, the drivers that is, share this very same notion. The sequence of fast and slow turns in the total of 16 corners is considered challenging, but also very entertaining at the same time. The 1.2 km long start-finish straight is one of the longest among existing Formula 1 tracks and adds another unique selling point to the Shanghai International Circuit.

Shanghai International Circuit as Groundbreaking Masterpiece

The actual topography of the site made the racetrack construction extremely complicated for our team of experts. Over 40,000 piles and massive amounts of polystyrene were used to stabilize the soft, swampy ground. For this reason, the project’s foundation stone was actually already laid underground in beforehand. The Shanghai International Circuit provided successful solutions to exceptional geological challenges and set a new milestone in civil engineering, consolidating Tilke’s reputation as the global leader when it comes to the design and construction of racetracks. 

Directly after its completion in 2004, the Shanghai International Circuit has become an integral part of the annual Formula 1 calendar. In addition, other racing series such as the WEC and the WTCC host their events every year at the Shanghai International Circuit.