Donington Park Best Viewing Locations for Spectators

Alex Gassman

by Alex Gassman

Donington park viewing from the Wheatcroft grandstand

Visiting Donington for an upcoming race event? This article lists the best viewing locations at Donington Park to make sure you get the best seat in the house on race day.

Contents

spectating at Donington Park

Some of the UK’s most prestigious race events are held at Donington Park. The natural elevation changes around the circuit make it one of the most exciting and picturesque motorsport venues, as well as one of the best to spectate at. It has some of the most thrilling corners in the country, so make sure you have an idea of what area of the track you want to watch from before you head out.

However, like at most race circuits you should be prepared to walk to get to some of the Donington Park best viewing locations. There are a only a couple of small grandstands which will be detailed below, but the rest of Donington’s viewing spot do not have any fixed seating.

If you are heading to Donington as a spectator, driver or team member, make sure you check out our complete guide to Donington Park circuit before you go.

Hollywood Grandstand viewing at Donington Park

where to sit at Donington Park?

The best place to sit at Donington Park to get a great view of the racing action is in the Hollywood Grandstand. This is one of only two fixed seating areas around the whole circuit, and has amazing views right from Redgate corner down to Schwantz, looking over Craner Curves. The rest of the viewing areas do not have fixed seating so you must bring your own camping chairs, a thermos flask and umbrellas!

See next section for more information on the grandstand seating arrangements.

Donington Park grandstand viewing & seating

There are only two grandstands at Donington Park for race day viewing.

Tickets for both of the below grandstand are purchased online on the Donington Park website in addition to your general admission tickets. You can select your specific seats at the time of booking, as in the image below. Grandstand seats for the BTCC are £25 per adult.

Sometimes only one grandstand is open during a race weekend, such as the BTCC when only the Hollywood stand is open to the public. On other ocassions as smaller race meetings you may not need to pay to sit in the grandstands.

Hollywood Grandstand ticket purchasing at Donington Park BTCC

Wheatcroft Grandstand

There is the Wheatcroft grandstand, a small covered grandstand on the main straight, just after the pitlane entrance and before the start / finish line. This provides views of the final corner – Roberts or Goddards depending on which circuit configuration is in use – the main straight and the first turn Redgate.

If you want to see the race start and any potential first corner mayhem then this is a pretty good spot. Additionally, some final lap do-or-die manoeuvres take place at the last corner which you will also have a view of.

If you sit in the higher rows you can also see across the track to Schwantz and McLean’s.

Wheatcroft grandstand at donington park
Donington wheatcroft grandstand view
Donington wheatcroft grandstand view

This is the only covered grandstand or seating area at the whole circuit, so if you are heading to a race in the winter months and want to stand a chance of keeping out of the rain, this might be a good option. The higher up and more central your seating location, the better chance you stand of keeping out of the elements.

This grandstand isn’t always open to the public, so check online before booking. But you can normally get in to this during a Donington Trackday which is great as it’s right next to the pit garages and paddock area.

Hollywood Grandstand

The Hollywood Grandstand is located on the outside of Hollywood corner, but has an amazing view of the first half of the whole track. You have a panorama view which covers the final part of the start / finish straight, Redgate, Hollywood, the daunting Craner Curves, the Old Hairpin, Starkey’s Bridge and Schwantz curve.

This is definitely one of the best viewing points on the whole Donington circuit. Before this grandstand was built this spot was a fan favourite, now the grandstand provides and even better vantage point.

It is not covered so bring some outdoor clothing to prepare for the English elements.

Hollywood grandstand viewing at Donington Park

Donington Park best viewing locations

Whilst I think the Hollywood Grandstand is one of the best place to view the racing action, there are lots of other good spots dotted around the circuit that make for good viewing. The map below shows these viewing areas in light blue with a description of each of them below that.

My suggestion would be to prepare to try a few different areas out throughout the day. Going from the infield to the outfield or vice versa is a long walk, but potentially worth it to get a full flavour of all of the different areas.
Bring your camping chairs, a coolbox, an umbrella and maybe even your pushbike to cover the ground more quickly and you are likely to have a good day once you find your favourite spot.

Donington Park spectator viewing location map

Area A

This area is on the outside of the circuit from the first corner Redgate right up to the Hollywood Grandstand. Standing here gets you a view of the action at the first corner, as well as right down the main straight to the exit of the final chicane.

Getting here is pretty easy, only a 5 minute walk from the pits and paddock area.

Area B

This is again on the outside of the circuit, pretty much from the far side of the Hollywood Grandstand right around to the outside of the Old Hairpin.

Craner Curves is one of the scariest corners in the country, and combined with the Old Hairpin this is one of the most exciting sections of track to watch. The cars are doing 100mph+ through here and with some close racing there’s always something going on. Pretty much anywhere in this area you will have a view from Hollywood, through Craner and the Old Hairpin right up to Starkey’s. The video below was shot from a couple of hundred yards further down the hill from the Hollywood grandstand. 

At the bottom of the Old Hairpin you can look straight up at the cars coming down. The video below shows this viewpoint, and this is one of the most popular places to watch from.

If you want to get this kind of view from the comfort of your car, check out how to book parking at Starkey’s car park.

Area C

This is on the inside of the circuit, giving a different perspective of Craner Curves and the Old Hairpin compared to Area B. To get here you have to go through the infield pedestrian tunnel found in the paddock near Garage 39.

Infield viewing tunnel location at Donington
Donington infield viewing tunnel

This is on the inside of the circuit, giving a different perspective of Craner Curves and the Old Hairpin compared to Area B. To get here you have to go through the infield pedestrian tunnel found in the paddock near Garage 39.

Looking to your left you get a view of Hollywood and Craner, ahead of you is the Old Hairpin and to the right is Starkey’s and Schwantz, so you get a great panorama. Check out the video below for an idea of the view.

The fence line is much further back at the Old Hairpin on this side of the track so you are a little further from the action there, but at the left hand of Craner Curves it is a little closer compared to the outside of the track.

Craner Curves infield viewing at Donington Park

Area D

This viewing area on the outside of McLeans and Coppice is a longer walk around the outside of the track. But both of these two corners are good overtaking opportunities, so both usually make for some good action. Looking across the track from McLeans you will see the infield camping area. The more expensive row of premium pitches have a trackside viewing, making it a great spot if you want to spend the weekend. You can also get a view of Craner in the distance back up the track from here, as the image below shows.

If you are at Coppice you are at a higher elevation, so you can get a view of McLeans too. But the fencing at Coppice can be a bit restrictive of your view, unless you’re in the Disabed parking area which has a great view. Whilst the East entrance of the circuit is the closest to this viewing area, you may still have to enter via the main entrance depending on the size of the race meeting.

McLeans corner viewpoint at Donington back up to Craner Curves

Area E

If the National circuit is in use (as it is for the BTCC), viewing at the final chicane of Roberts is always a good idea to catch some last-minute do or die overtakes happening here. It’s not unusual to see cars attempt to go three-abreast through here, inevitably resulting in one or more of them off in the gravel. It’s a pretty fast chicane too, so always exciting to watch.

9:00 in the video below shows the view from here.

Area F

If the Grand Prix circuit is in use, watching on the outside of the fast Fogarty Esses can be quite exciting as well. You will have to walk around the outside of the Melbourne hairpin to get there which adds a few minutes to the walk, but seing cars or bikes flying through here taking more and more kerb makes for great viewing.

how close can you get to the action?

On the satellite image below I have highlighted the spectator viewing fence boundary in blue, for both the infield and outfield viewing areas. This shows how close you can get to the circuit at any point.

Alex Gassman

I‘m Alex. I write F1 and motorsport travel guides based on my experience as racing driver and full-time motorsport nerd. I’ve traveled the world watching F1 and other racing series.

I started oversteer48 with the aim of helping other motorsport fans who are planning on watching some racing themselves.

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