Image credit Victor Mooney
The COTA Turn 12 bleachers / grandstand are a great place to spectate from at the Circuit of the Americas. They give a view covering a huge number of corners, the closest of which are great overtaking spots.
This article provides a guide to spectating at Turn 12, including examples of the view from the grandstand, the seating chart, nearby facilities and more.
What is the Turn 12 grandstand at COTA?
The COTA Turn 12 grandstand is a large set of raised bleacher seating for spectators who have pre-reserved their seats in this specific grandstand in advance.
The bleachers at Turn 12 are present and available to pre-purchase tickets for most motorsport events at the Circuit of the Americas, including the F1, Nascar Cup Series and the MotoGP.
Where is the Turn 12 grandstand?
The grandstand at Turn 12 is located on the outside (right-hand side) of the track at the end of the long back straight. The grandstand starts in the braking zone for the corner and ends pretty much in line with the apex.
The bleachers run parallel to the end of the back straight and are pretty close to the edge of the track. Being a straight there is no need for a large run-off area or gravel trap between the circuit and the catch fence, so the grandstand is almost as close as it possibly could be.
COTA Turn 12 grandstand view
The view from the Turn 12 bleachers covers not just corner number 12, but turns 13, 14, 15 and the start of 16 as well. Plus a whole host of corners on the other side of the track are visible from here too.
The cars will enter your vision from the left. The further to the left of the stand you sit the more of the back straight you’ll be able to see. From most seats you can normally see a couple of hundred feet back along it.
The cars will then pass right in front of you as they get hard on the brakes at the end of the straight that’s three quarters of a mile long. Turn 12 is one of the best overtaking opportunities on the whole track thanks to slipstreaming (and DRS in F1) along the straight before it.
As the cars go around Turn 12 they’ll head away from you briefly towards Turn 13, before switching back on themselves around 14 and coming back towards you.
Turn 14 is slightly over to your right but if you’re high enough in the stand you can see over the fence that divides the two sections of track and catch Turn 15. You can then follow the cars as they accelerate towards Turn 16 and drop out of sight under the bridge.
Unlike the COTA Turn 9 bleachers, these ones aren’t quite so far off the ground. That means that the front rows are closer to ground level and have to look through the catch fencing to see the action.
Rows 20 and upwards should be high enough to see over the catch fencing in front of you and give an unobstructed view across the infield barrier towards Turn 15.
Additionally you can see back across to the other side of the track to the incredibly fast ‘esses’ of turns 3, 4, 5 and 6. You can see them round the left of 7, lose them briefly as they charge up the hill towards 8 and then catch them again round turn 9. See the videos below for examples.
The map below shows the areas of track that can be seen from the COTA Turn 12 grandstand highlighted in green.
The video below gives a great example of the view from the Turn 12 bleachers, shot from section 9 row 25. One thing to be aware of is that if you sit on the extreme right hand side in section 11 quite a long way up, your view over towards Turn 15 may be slightly blocked by the white hospitality tent adjacent to the bleachers.
This video is from section 7, a little further to the left, and in row 3, almost at the front. The slightly lower viewpoint shows that the catch fence directly in front of the stand is in view (but not really an issue). It also shows that you briefly lose the cars behind the infield barrier as they enter Turn 15.
COTA Turn 12 general admission viewing
There are no official general admission viewing areas near Turn 12. To the left of the bleachers is a reserved RV parking area and to the right is a hospitality / VIP viewing tent.
See our other article on COTA general admission viewing for info on where to watch from.
COTA Turn 12 grandstand facilities
- The Turn 12 bleachers at COTA are not covered. They’re completely open to the elements with no shade, so make sure you bring adequate sun protection.
- There are toilet blocks just behind the bleachers.
- In 2022 there was a fully stocked bar and water station directly behind the stand. Plus you’re a very short walk from the Grand Plaza near the main entrance which is full of food and drink vendors.
- The seats are bleachers. If you want a backrest then you need the back row where you can lean up against the fence.
- There is one giant screen on the opposite side of the track off to the left hand side of the grandstand. It’s a little harder to see from the right hand sections of the bleachers. The image below was taken from section 9.
COTA Turn 12 seating chart
Enter your name and email in the boxes below and the hi-res COTA grandstand seating charts will be sent to your inbox. These will include all details of row and seat numbers. The files are too big to host here!
There are 11 sections in the Turn 12 grandstand. Some sections have ‘Row AC’ at the very front for those with disabilities. Public seating rows start at 1 lowest down in the stand, and go up to 37 at the back with the highest vantage point.
Is Turn 12 at Circuit of the Americas a good place to sit?
The bleachers at Turn 12 give an amazing view of the circuit, covering around 11 different corners which include the incredibly high speed ‘esses’.
Ok, so you don’t get as good a view of them as you would if you were sat in the COTA Turn 6 stand. But considering they’re still visible, plus you also have a great view of the much slower turns 12 to 15 that are prime for overtaking, then you get to witness a much bigger variety of action.
I would also chose to sit at Turn 12 rather than the COTA Turn 9 grandstand which is also bleachers. Turn 12 gives you an almost perfect view of turns 12 to 15 where you are guaranteed to see some overtaking.
I would try and sit pretty high up, probably rows 25 upwards, and towards the right hand side of the stand – but not on the extreme right. This kind of area would give you a closer view of the action from Turn 12 onwards.
The ‘esses’ will be further away but regardless of where you sit you could probably do with a pair of binoculars to have a better view of them anyway.
The other consideration if you still want to see the stadium section are the two COTA Turn 15 grandstands. These also cover turns 12 – 16, but get the right spot and you can see Turn 1 as well.
As Turn 12 are bleachers the tickets are usually a little cheaper than the fully fledged grandstands with individual chairs. That makes them great value.
Closest parking lots
Parking lots C and E are closest to the bleachers at Turn 12.
Our COTA parking guide has more info.
Circuit of the Americas Turn 12 grandstand tickets
Tickets for the COTA Turn 9 grandstand can be purchased through the official Circuit of the Americas website, or through the official F1 ticket website for the Formula 1 event.