Silverstone circuit configurations & layouts: National, GP, Stowe…

Alex Gassman

by Alex Gassman

Silverstone circuit layouts

There are four different Silverstone circuit configurations that are currently used for a variety of race series, driving experiences and vehicle testing. 

This article lists track maps, corner names and circuit lengths for each of the layouts, as well as providing info on which races take place on each.

Contents

Silverstone circuit configurations

There are four separate circuit configurations / layouts at Silverstone:

  • Silverstone National circuit
  • Silverstone International circuit
  • Silverstone Grand Prix (Arena) circuit
  • Silverstone Stowe circuit

Only the first three of these are used for race events. The fourth, Stowe circuit, is too small to be used for racing. It is predominantly used for driving experiences and manufacturer vehicle testing.

The layout of Silverstone and each of its circuit configurations has changed a lot over the years, since a circuit was first used for racing on the site of the old RAF Silverstone WW2 airfield in the late 1940s. This article focuses on the current day versions of each of these circuits.

Silverstone National circuit

Circuit length: 1.64 miles / 2.64 km

Silverstone National corner names:

  1. Copse
  2. Maggots
  3. Becketts
  4. Brooklands
  5. Luffield
  6. Woodcote
Silverstone National circuit map with corner names and numbers

The National circuit is the smallest of the three Silverstone circuit configurations that is used for racing. It only has 6 corners, all of which are used on the Grand Prix layout. The circuit is dominated by the three straight sections: Wellington Straight, National Pits Straight and the unnamed straight between Copse and Maggots.

This means that Silverstone National is a bit of a power circuit. Any extra straight-line speed that you can find from your car will help you massively. When I used to race at Silverstone National in a one-make sports car series, often the people with the suspiciously fast engines would rise to the top of the timesheets.

Despite this, the National Circuit at Silverstone always provides some intense racing. The heavy braking at Maggots and Becketts always bunches the field up, and the run down the Wellington Straight in to Brooklands and Luffield is an amazing overtaking opportunity, the best on the circuit.

On the inside of the National circuit is also where plans are in place for a Silverstone go karting track, planned to be built in 2023.

Race Series

Some of the biggest British racing series use the National circuit for their events, as well as a huge number of racing clubs including the BARC, BRSCC, BMCRC, CSCC and HSCC. Some of the championships that race on the Silverstone National circuit include:

  • British Touring Car Championship
  • British Superbike Championship
  • TCR UK Championship
  • Ginetta Juniors
  • Ginetta GT Championship
  • Formula Ford National
  • Mini Challenge
  • MSVR club Championships
  • Kumho BMW Championship
  • British Superkarts
  • No-Limits motorbike Championships
  • Bentley Drivers Club

Spectating

There are a number of grandstands and viewing areas dotted around outside of the National Circuit. The grandstands include Stirling, Copse, Luffield, Woodcote and the National Pits Straight.

Whilst not all of these grandstands will be open for all of the race events listed above, each of those links provides a guide to what the view is like from the different areas.

Silverstone International circuit

Circuit length: 1.85 miles / 2.98 km

Silverstone International corner names:

  1. Abbey
  2. Farm Curve
  3. Village
  4. The Link
  5. Becketts
  6. Stowe
  7. Vale
  8. Club
Silverstone international circuit map with corner names and numbers

The International Circuit at Silverstone pretty much uses the other half of the Grand Prix circuit that isn’t used by the National layout. The only part of the International Circuit that doesn’t feature on the GP circuit is The Link. This joins the Village and Becketts corners together, whereas on the GP circuit there are 7 other corners between those two.

Silverstone International Circuit combines a couple of fast straights – Hamilton and Hangar, with two very slow and technical sections. These are the Village and Vale sections. These are both heavy braking zones and very slow corners, which can make the International circuit feel quite stop-start. It does still have the fast corners of Abbey and Stowe, however.

The International circuit is rarely used for Silverstone track days. They are mostly run on the National or GP circuits.

Race Series

Whilst the fast straights and tight corners of the International Circuit provide good overtaking opportunities, this circuit layout isn’t as popular for hosting race meetings. In 2022 only the BARC and BRSCC held races on the International Layout. Below are some of the formulae that raced on it:

  • Ma5da MX5 Championship & Supercup
  • Modified Ford series
  • Mini Miglias & Mini SE7ENS
  • Fiesta ST150 & ST240 Championships
  • Mini Challenge
  • Caterham Academy & Roadsport Championships
  • Kumho BMW Championship
  • Thunder Saloons

Spectating

Some of the spectator grandstands around the Silverstone International Circuit include Stowe, Vale, Club, Hamilton Straight, the View, Farm Curve and Village.

Silverstone Grand Prix circuit

Circuit length: 3.66 miles / 5.89 km

Silverstone Grand Prix circuit corner names:

  1. Abbey
  2. Farm Curve
  3. Village
  4. The Loop
  5. Aintree
  6. Brooklands
  7. Luffield
  8. Woodcote
  9. Copse
  10. Maggots
  11. Becketts
  12. Chapel
  13. Stowe
  14. Vale
  15. Club
Silverstone GP track map with pitlanes

The ‘new’ Silverstone Grand Prix circuit was first opened for racing in 2011, after the addition of the Arena infield layout including Village, the Loop and Aintree corners, as well as the Silverstone Wing building lining the edge of the new pit lane and paddock.

The new tight and technical infield section added an additional 0.5 miles to the overall track length, plus created a whole new section to encourage overtaking. It has hosted the F1 and MotoGP for years, and is a fan-favourite on both of those calendars.

At over 3.5 miles long it is one of the longest circuits in the UK. A fast roadcar such as a Porsche 911 GT2 RS takes over 2 minutes to complete a full lap. See our article on fastest Silverstone lap times for more details on the best laps and lap records around here.

Race Series

Obviously, the Silverstone Grand Prix circuit is home to the Formula One British Grand Prix, which in 2022 attracted over 400,000 fans resulting in the highest Silverstone F1 ticket prices ever for the 2023 race.

It also host a number of other club championships. Below is a list of some of the race meetings held at Silverstone Grand Prix circuit:

  • Formula 1
  • MotoGP
  • Silverstone Festival (was the Classic)
  • World Endurance Champiomships
  • British GT Championship
  • British Endurance Championship
  • Britcar Championship
  • Praga / Prototype Cup
  • MX5 Championship
  • Citreon C1 24 hour race
  • British F4 championship
  • GB3 & GB4 championship
  • Radical cup
  • Historic Formula Ford
  • Caterham Championships

Spectating

All of the spectating areas and grandstands listed for the National and International circuits are applicable to the Grand Prix circuit too. The only other ones are the grandstands at Becketts and Chapel.

Silverstone Stowe circuit

Circuit length: 1.1 miles / 1.8 km

Number of corners: 9 (unnamed)

Silverstone stowe circuit map with corner numbers

Silverstone Stowe Circuit is situated on the inside of the International circuit. It doesn’t share any track with any of the other Silverstone circuit configurations listed on this page.

There are actually two slightly different layouts of the Stowe circuit. The one shown above is the longer of the two. Despite this, it is too small and tight to be used for any race series. Instead it’s mainly used for driving experience days, magazine car tests and vehicle development. You can also find it in Gran Turismo 6 if you wanted to drive it for yourself.

Silverstone stowe circuit inside the Silverstone international circuit, also showing the silverstone world rx circuit

World Rallycross Championship at Silverstone

When the World RX Championship raced at Silverstone in 2018 and 2019 it used part of the Stowe circuit, plus an additional gravel section on the inside of Stowe to create it’s own half tarmac half gravel track that can be seen on the image above.

The World RX only raced there for two years before deciding it wasn’t financially viable going forwards. For 2023 the British round of the World Rallycross Championship will be going back to Lydden Hill.

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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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