The Zandvoort track layout has changed a lot over the last few decades.
Most recently there were some dramatic changes made to the circuit to allow the Formula 1 to return there in 2021 which include some incredibly steep banking.
This article provides all the details of the Zandvoort layout used for F1. It includes info on the angle of the banking, how long the straights are, DRS zones and a brief look at the circuit’s history.
History of the Zandvoort track layout
Zandvoort circuit was first used for racing in 1948. The 1948 race was called the Zandvoort Grand Prix and from 1950 onwards it became the Dutch Grand Prix.
The circuit was based on a number of pre-existing roads built by the German Army during World War 2.
The original version of the Zandvoort circuit was 2.6 miles / 4.2km long and had 12 corners.
The circuit stayed pretty much the same until the end of 1989. The only changes to the Zandvoort track layout during that time were modifications to turns 8 and 11 to turn them in to more distinctive chicanes.
In the late 1980s the circuit received a lot of noise complaints from local residents, mainly those nearest the southern part of the track (Turns 8 to 12 on the map above).
To try and stop the circuit from being closed down motorsport the circuit’s owners redesigned the track layout to remove the southern section. This resulted in the ‘club’ circuit that was used from 1990 to 1998.
This Zandvoort track layout was much shorter at just 1.6 miles / 2.5km and only had 8 corners.
At the end of the 1990s the Dutch government wanted to return the circuit to a full Grand Prix track. This meant one more redesign and extension of the circuit, incorporating all of the original sections.
The new Grand Prix layout was first used in 2001 and has remained pretty much the same ever since.
Formula 1 returned to this circuit in 2021 and the Dutch GP winner’s trophy was lifted by home hero Max Verstappen. But there were a few changes that had to be made to the circuit in preparation for F1’s return to Zandvoort.
Zandvoort track layout changes for Formula 1
With Formula 1 returning to the circuit in 2021 they needed to make as much room in the paddock for all of the team trucks and support vehicles.
This meant Turn 3 had to be slightly re-modelled to move it further away from the inside of the track. 16 metres further away to be precise. The result would have been a shorter run up to the high speed Turns 4, 5 and 6 which are one of signature sections of the original track.
The shorter run would have meant speeds would be lower and this section would have been less exciting or as impressed.
To compensate for this the circuit management and designers had an idea to build a steep banking Turn 3 and Turn 14.
Image credit Studiodromo.it
The banking at Zandvoort
The banking at Zandvoort’s Turn 3 has a gradient of 35% or 18 degrees and a vertical height difference from the inside to the outside of 4.5 metres.
This is now one of the most iconic corners in the world and makes Zandvoort a very recognizable circuit on the F1 calendar.
In addition to the banking at Turn 3 another corner was redesigned. With the return of F1 came Formula 1 management’s desire to have a longer main straight to increase overtaking opportunities, up the excitement and bump Dutch GP ticket prices.
The circuit’s surroundings of sand dunes and a holiday village made extending the main straight impossible.
Instead the final corner, Turn 14, was given another steep bank.
This means the cars can enter the start / finish straight much faster, but it requires some extra bravery from the drivers.
This, combined with the banking at Turn 3, makes Zandvoort a highly respected and feared circuit by all the F1 drivers.
With the changes made to the circuit ahead of the 2021 season it was a chance for new Zandvoort lap records to be set.
Zandvoort corner names
The current circuit layout at Zandvoort used for the Dutch Grand Prix has 14 corners. Each corner has the following name (‘bocht’ means bend or turn):
- Turn 1: Tarzanbocht
- Turn 2: Gerlachbocht
- Turn 3: Hugenholtzbocht
- Turn 4: Hunserug
- Turn 5: Rob
- Turn 6: Bocht 6
- Turn 7: Scheivlak
- Turn 8: Masterbocht
- Turn 9: Bocht 9
- Turn 10: Bocht 10
- Turns 11 & 12: Hans Ernst Bocht
- Turn 13: Kumhobocht
- Turn 14: Arie Luyendijk Bocht
Why is it called Tarzan Corner?
The first corner on the Zandvoort circuit is called Tarzan corner. Legend has it that it was given this name after a local man, who was a giant of a man, refused to give up his garden in 1938 to make way for the circuit to be built.
Only when the officials offered to name a corner after him did he give in.
There are a couple of other potential reasons why it was given the name Tarzan, but none as interesting as this one. So let’s stick with that.
How long is Zandvoort circuit?
Zandvoort circuit is 2.65 miles / 4.26km long. That’s the length of the circuit layout currently used for Formula 1.
How long is the straight at Zandvoort?
Zandvoort’s start / finish straight isn’t that long which is why the banking at Turn 14 was introduced.
The main straight at Zandvoort is 690 metres / 2265 feet long, measured from the exit of Turn 14 to the entry of Turn 1.
There are two DRS Zones on the Zandvoort track layout. One of these starts between turns 13 and 14 and relies on the banking to keep the cars on track when their DRS is activated around the corner.
See our article on the Zandvoort DRS zones for more details.
Sectors on the current Zandvoort track
The Zandvoort circuit layout is split in to three different timed sectors. The boundary of these sectors is marked by a ‘Split’ timing line called either S1 or S2.
- S1 is the boundary between sectors 1 and 2 and is 100 metres before Turn 7.
- S2 is the boundary between sectors 2 and 3 and is 150 metres before Turn 11.
- The start / finish line is the boundary between sectors 3 and 1 and is where the lap times reset to zero.
Zandvoort Pit Lane
The Zandvoort pit lane entry point is on the start / finish straight after the exit of Turn 14. It then rejoins the circuit between turns 1 and 2 on the inside of the track.
The total length of the Zanvoort pit lane is 730 metres / 2,400 feet.
The average time taken for an F1 car to transit the Zandvoort pit lane, including a standard pit stop for new tyres, is between 18 and 20 seconds.
In 2022 the fastest pit lane transit time at the Dutch Grand Prix was 18.7 second by Pierre Gasly driving for the AlphaTauri team.