Editor's Blog From 2010: A Photo Lap Of Motorland Aragon

(Editor's note: I made a photo lap of the Aragon circuit last year, to give readers an idea of just how steep and tricky the circuit is. I've reposted this photo lap as a reminder for anyone who has forgotten.)

Motorland Aragon is a brand new track on the MotoGP calendar, and if it has a defining feature, it's the elevation around the track. The track winds uphill, drops down a little, then climbs back up again before plummeting down the back straight towards the final corner. I went for a walk around the track to explore, and took some photos.

At the end of the straight, there's a small drop into Turn 1

Once you're Turn 2, starting to go uphill

Out of 2, on to Turn 3. The track is slowly starting to climb.

Through Turn 3, the track is about to climb seriously

Up the hill out of Turn 3. This is steep.

This is how steep the climb up to Turn 4 is. Expect the Honda to be strong here.

Turn 4 is a fairly fast sweeper, but we're still climbing

Through 5, and onto 6

Up the hill through 6 towards 7

MotoGP's Safety Officer pushing it through 7. This is just about the track's highest point.

And on to the short straight before the Sacacorchos - Turns 8 and 9.

There's a big drop off before Turn 8, making that part completely blind.

Spain's very own Corkscrew: Turns 8 and 9

Tight, downhill, off-camber

After 8 and 9, the hill bottoms out in the middle of Turn 10, and starts to climb up the hill again

The exit of 10 heads up the hill through Turn 11, a long fast sweeper

The entrance to Turn 12 is completely blind, as is much of the rest of the track

There's no sign of where to turn in for Turn 12 at the top of the hill. The backdrop, on the other hand, is spectacular.

Franco Uncini demonstrates just where the turn in point is

Turn 12 turns sharply on towards Turn 13. 

Yet another blind bend with no sign of a turn-in point: Turn 14

Colin Edwards hits the right hander at Turn 14

It's all downhill from Turn 14, with the sharp left of Turn 15 directly afterwards

The long drop down the back straight. Despite the corner leading on to it being slower, you pick up speed quickly here. A lot of scooters were topping out down the back.

The back straight levels off a couple of hundred of meters before the final section

Turn's 16 and 17 are really just one really, really long left back up the hill onto the straight

It's a stiff old climb back up onto the front straight

Nearly there, up the hill and back across the line

The circuit has a 3D map showing the track elevation. It's impressive.

The people who are paying for this whole thing

Mountains frame the track

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thanks david! this track looks really friggin cool - can't wait to see the racing here. and moto2 might actually survive lap 1 (how far is T1 from the start/finish?)

Now if we can just have a race instead of a procession this weekend.(we are due for at least one good race this season aren't we?)..

All the comments I have seen from the riders (except stoner) seem to really like the track and facility.... looks great from here.

Thanks David

Thanks David!

I have become a huge fan of MotoMatters thanks to your excellent journalism and for more-photographic posts like this one.

It helps all of us fans to truly visualize what the riders will go through on this track. I haven't seen any other site that has done this ... so kudos to you!

Cheers and best regards, Mike

I'm actually much more excited now. The track should bring out the most and best of riders and bikes!

Wow ! A great description and pictures to match! Can you come to NJMP (t-bolt) and do the same :)

Some really nail biting blind corners! I give these pilots mucho kudo's!

thank Dave!

The blind crest before T8, is that the 50m sign that I see on the left?!

Lots of blind corners, interesting. Really looking forward to this w'ends racing.

. . . . . for the photo lap. With a track map and these pictures you can really get an idea of what the track is like. TV usually doesn't do justice to what a track is really like. Thanks for finding the time to do this again, I greatly appreciate the effort. I wonder what it's gonna be like in the rain?

.... with these pics.

The "nearly there over the line" shot reminds me of Germany, that last left hander.

Looks like another fantastic Spanish track. ANOTHER. UK, take note.
Lots of blind bends.


"Looks like another fantastic Spanish Grand Prix track. ANOTHER. US, take note."


If only Road America were GP-approved.

Thanks for the lap. Great stuff. I really like the 3D map, too. That really puts it into perspective.

I wonder if the super short straights between the backside corners are really that great for MotoGP bikes. I count 9 of them. Do you hit it for 1 second then brake again for the next bend or what? Can you pass anywhere there uphill on an 800? Back tire, front tire, sidewall, back tire, front tire, sidewall all the way through the uphill section with the anti-wheelie electrics killing your torque drive. I think it is hard to describe it as flowing, more like gas guzzling and exhausting.

On the good side it will be tough to run away I think so maybe the race will be close for once.

I'll be counting how many Moto2 guys are run wide in turn one and I'd better take my shoes off before the race 'cause it will be more than 10.

The pavement looks killer though. Indy guys take notice.

I love these. They help a lot.

I want a good pic of that crazy brick wall. It looks midevil/awesome.

I can now see why Ducati did so well on this track in 2010: Most of the corners are going up hill before going down hill the main straight. There are just 2 to 3 corners the front tyre need to be pushed.

Thanks again David, love the 3d image it really does give a good sense of the track any chance we could get them for all tracks, I fear we all too often miss out on the undulations through a lens..

Does he sometimes walk the track, rather than fang about in the BM?
I've often wondered why Phillip Island gets away with having its "gravel" traps full of 10cm rocks... but until you slide in there, you don't realise...

Firstly,thanks for the walk around the circuit. From the armchair I rank it alongside Mugello and Philip Island. That finger nail at the end of the long back straight. I wish they would include it for GP as they did in SBK this year. The GP circuit peels off early and sweetly. That final hairpin off the back straight as used in SBK provided for some mammoth late breaking. A sight to behold that was. It will be interesting to know the reason they don't include it for GP.

On TV it looks like there are ALOT of elevation changes. You were able to show more angles from the Riders point of view of what they see before they get to a couple of blind corners.

That is really helpful seeing the steepness of some of the areas. Gives all of us who cannot be there a better feel of what the racers are doing. Thanks again David. Keep on keeping on, because this is just feeding my addiction to MOTOGP! The only site I come to other than Motogp just because of what you just posted.

Thanks for the pictures!

The track doesn't look too bad - for a $%^@! Tilkdrome. At least they allowed for the replacement of the 'freaking joke' corner at the end of the straight with something a little more respectable. Still, it needs one or two more fast corners to have any hope of becoming a classic track.

We just need all the circuit owners to invite the google street-view van to do a lap... ideally on the Sunday lunchtime of the GP weekend :)