Donington Park 292

Donington Park

Donington Park opened as a motorcycle circuit in 1931 under the direction of local garage owner and competitor Fred Craner.

Country
Britain
Location
Castle Donington, Leicestershire
Latest Race

Donington Park opened as a motorcycle circuit in 1931 under the direction of local garage owner and competitor Fred Craner. Car racing followed two years later, and in 1935 the circuit hosted its first Grand Prix. That was an expanded club race at first, but for 1937 the all-conquering German teams entered with Bernd Rosemeyer scoring the last win of his meteoric career. Both Auto Union and Mercedes-Benz returned in 1938 despite the Munich crisis, with Tazio Nuvolari again winning for Auto Union. Like Brooklands in the south, Donington remained closed after the war. But Tom Wheatcroft bought the land in 1971 and successfully reopened the venue six years later. He also built a museum to house the largest collection of single-seater racing cars in the world. Since reopening in 1977, Donington has held European Touring Cars, Formulae 2, 3000, and 3, the Motorcycle Grand Prix, and finally a full F1 World Championship Grand Prix in 1993. In an event dogged by heavy rain, Ayrton Senna’s opening lap (in which he passed four cars to take the lead) is now as legendary as Donington’s Mercedes/Auto Union battles 50 years earlier. Speculator Simon Gillett acquired the rights to stage the British GP at Donington from 2010 but was unable to see that ambitious project to fruition, despite having begun the required upgrades and left the venue inoperable for a time.

Circuit

Type

Permanent road course

Length

2.19 (Miles)

Description

Original circuit

Fastest Race Lap

Fastest Qualifying Lap

Type

Permanent road course

Length

2.551 (Miles)

Description

Track extended to a hairpin beyond Redgate

Fastest Race Lap

Fastest Qualifying Lap

Type

Permanent road course

Length

3.125 (Miles)

Description

Old Melbourne Corner added

Fastest Race Lap

Manfred von Brauchitsch (Mercedes-Benz W125), 2m10.4, 86.273 mph, GP, 1937

Fastest Qualifying Lap

Bernd Rosemeyer (Auto Union C) and Manfred von Brauchitsch (Mercedes-Benz W125), both 2m11.4, 85.616 mph, GP, 1937

Type

Permanent road course

Length

1.9573 (Miles)

Description

New circuit built on sight of pre-war venue

Fastest Race Lap

Fastest Qualifying Lap

Grand Prix Circuit

1985

Type

Permanent road course

Length

2.4873 (Miles)

Description

New Melbourne Hairpin opened

Fastest Race Lap

Alain Prost (Williams FW15C-Renault), 1m10.458, 127.736 mph, F1, 1993

Fastest Qualifying Lap

Ayrton Senna (McLaren MP4/8-Ford), 1m18.029, 115.331 mph, F1, 1993 (set on a lap through the pitlane)

National Circuit

1977

Type

Permanent road course

Length

1.9573 (Miles)

Description

National circuit when Melbourne loop is opened

Fastest Race Lap

Fastest Qualifying Lap

3,128

Championships

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12,833

Results

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15,933

Drivers

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8,248

Teams

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856

Circuits

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