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Old 01-09-2013, 01:34 AM   #1
MarkPcar
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Default Where are the best F1 seats at COTA?

Lovely wife gave me (us) a trip to Austin for the F1 next November. Trying to decide on a seat location. Main straight sounds kind of boring. Fast curvy section and a passing zone would be nice.

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Old 01-09-2013, 03:48 AM   #2
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We have Premium Seat Licenses in the turn 12-15 complex. We did a lot of recon during construction and ultimately decided on this section over main straight and turn 1 because it seems like the most likely to have up close interesting action over anywhere else on the track. The main straight gets you start/finish and maybe a pit stop, but the rest of the race you're watching on jumbotron or fanvision. T1 may actually have decent lines down the straight and in the distance from 2-11, but your chance for action is really only the start. FWIW, the only pass for the lead was going into T12 from the back straight from 11 (which is also the DRS zone). For the support races there was a lot more action through out this section, including going into the double apex 15.

This year we were at the end of the "turn 15" grandstand at the end of the short exit straight after 15 right before the bridge. A panoramic pic is attached. We were about mid way up in row 17. We were pretty happy with the seats, but the bridge wasn't on the pre-construction renderings when we had picked the seats. While our sight lines for 12-15 were pretty great we had hoped to be able to look to our left to see some of the turn 3-7 curves but were blocked by the bridge.

COTA was kind enough to offer an us a no cost seat change which we're currently in process on. We are moving down to the "turn 15 corner" grandstands and moving a couple rows up to row 20. This will put us dead on with 15 and afford us a little more sight line up the straight coming into 12. The couple extra rows of elevation should also give us a clearer view by getting us above the safety fences. I've including a pic inline directly below of our view from the new seats.

Hope that helps, feel free to ask any more questions here or via PM if you want and I'll do my best to help out.

Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 01-09-2013, 07:39 AM   #3
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Fantastic info and photos, thanks!
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:02 AM   #4
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Does the PSL 'season ticket' price include tickets to all major events, or only F1? I wonder if there will be much resale market for tickets you can't use.
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Old 01-09-2013, 08:46 AM   #5
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Boycott COTA for not renting the track.
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:42 AM   #6
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Turn 15 stands all the way to the right just high enough to see over the bridge. You can see almost everything, much of the front straight, a good bit of the esses, a few other turns I couldnt identify, the back straight, and the 12-15 complex. At the top is handicap only, but if you can sneak up there for a few minutes before the bleacher ***** find you, the view is awesome, you can even see 16-19 too. Best view in the house IMO.
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:19 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkPcar View Post
Does the PSL 'season ticket' price include tickets to all major events, or only F1? I wonder if there will be much resale market for tickets you can't use.
It includes a specific set of events as set out in your contract, and then gives you the right of first refusal to purchase your seats for all other events.

When we purchased the obligation included F1 and Austrailian V8 Supercars. I believe that it now also includes MotoGP.

Our season ticket price for those 2 events is less than what our seats sold for F1 alone. I believe adding the third event only added 100/yr which would still be below market for face value of all 3.

We felt the market for non-f1 events would be good enough to take the plunge. We're not local, we're in SoCal, so we're trying to make the events we want to/can make and will resale the rest.
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:25 AM   #8
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Quote:
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Turn 15 stands all the way to the right just high enough to see over the bridge. You can see almost everything, much of the front straight, a good bit of the esses, a few other turns I couldnt identify, the back straight, and the 12-15 complex. At the top is handicap only, but if you can sneak up there for a few minutes before the bleacher ***** find you, the view is awesome, you can even see 16-19 too. Best view in the house IMO.
that is why we picked it and what we hoped for. We were in 17ish and it wasn't high enough. By my estimates you would need to be in about row 25 or above (in the highest price bracket) to clear the bridge. When we went to move there were not enough tickets (our group has 8) for us to go further up in that part of the stands.

It's also worth mentioning that if OP is considering PSL that *all* grandstands except the main straight were temporary this year. They will eventually be built as permanent and that may change sightlines (most likely raise by my guess). If I were going to buy into PSL now I would attend a race first so you can experience it & get lay of the land.

All that said, even including our move of seats, we are very happy with our decision to go PSL and look forward to the next 14 yrs of our license.
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Old 01-09-2013, 05:33 PM   #9
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T12
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:41 PM   #10
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Turn 1 is fabulous at the start, for the first lap only, as is turn 2. By turn 3 the cars are basically single file.

Most passing, as well as offs, both in F1 and the support races, happened in turn 12. 11 is a hard turn to get right, so there were differential speeds onto the back straight (20 is a much more straightforward turn, so less differentiation getting onto the front straight, which is also a lot shorter).

19 had a fair number of offs, but the F1 drivers had it sorted out by race time, though had some problems in practice, and the support races had problems in all sessions (the braking zone looks flat from overhead, but there's a significant rise and drop part-way through the braking zone, with less braking ability on the far side).

I was on the outside of turn 13 so was able to see all the action in turn 12. Of course I was in the best seat in the house for the Porsche sessions (on track) :-)
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Old 01-09-2013, 11:01 PM   #11
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We were in Turn 12 section 9. Absolutely loved it. This is where almost all of the action was taking place. We had a great view throughout the entire series of 12-15.
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Old 01-10-2013, 03:10 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Horus2000 View Post
We were in Turn 12 section 9. Absolutely loved it. This is where almost all of the action was taking place. We had a great view throughout the entire series of 12-15.
Very cool shot, do you have any of what 15 looked like from your side?
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
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Very cool shot, do you have any of what 15 looked like from your side?
I don't have one specifically angled at 15, but here's a wider shot that gives you an idea. These are just quickie iPhone snapshots, so not exactly wide angle...
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Old 01-10-2013, 01:51 PM   #14
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Great info everyone! Thanks
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:21 PM   #15
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Quote:
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I don't have one specifically angled at 15, but here's a wider shot that gives you an idea. These are just quickie iPhone snapshots, so not exactly wide angle...
That seems like a great spot, I'm planning on going next year and wondering where to sit.

Are there any spots where you can park an RV and watch from the roof?
(this is how we did it 2-3 times in Hungaroring and it worked great)
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:21 PM
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