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The Circuit Paul Ricard is popularly known as 'Le Castellet' after the surrounding region. The circuit hosted Formula 1's French Grand Prix for almost 20 years, with the first 1971 edition being won by Jackie Stewart, then in his second world championship season.
The original Circuit Paul Ricard was very much designed on a drawing board, then a highly unusual approach. It pioneered the way for modern circuits, and was constructed to meet the highest safety standards of the time. Later in its life it was redesigned by Hermann Tilke and upgraded into one of world's best test circuits used by some of motorsport's most professional teams.
The track offers 167 possible configurations from 826 to 5,861 meters. The track is characterized by its long Mistral straight (1.8 km). There is a possibility to water part of the track. There are two other tracks “Driving Center” (1.6 kms) and a Dynamic Driving Center (128 meters), both can be watered as well.
An aircraft landing strip suitable for private jets (up to 50 tons’ planes) is amongst the circuit's facilities. As well as a “2 stars Michelin” restaurants and 5 and 3 stars hotels right in front the circuit.
Circuit Paul Ricard features an Outdoor Karting Track (1 km long) that features the same type of abrasive safety zones as the car track.