Famous for its long and fast straights, twisty narrow corners and variation in altitude, the Guia Circuit in Macau is one of the most challenging motor racing tracks in the world.
The street circuit is now staging this week’s Grand Prix Macau, a four-day event of activities and races, which started on Thursday and runs until Sunday.
The circuit will host six motorcycle and car races – three of which are official FIA World Cup events – featuring international racing drivers and motorcyclists from around the world.
Here are some interesting facts about the world-famous event, which is celebrating its 65th edition this year.
1. When the event was first held in October, 1954, it was a 51-lap amateur race for motor enthusiasts in the city and only 15 drivers took part.
At that time, the condition of the Guia Circuit was described in the official steward’s report as “very bad – mostly dirt and loose sand”.
By the 1970s, the race had exploded in popularity and conditions were much improved.
2. The layout of the Guia Circuit remains unchanged since the first race.
However, since 1993, the pit and paddock have been relocated to the present location.
The famous Melco Hairpin is the narrowest part of the street circuit at only seven metres (22 feet) wide.
3. Formula Three made its debut in Macau in 1983.
Legendary Brazilian racing driver Ayrton Senna won the inaugural race driving a Ralt Toyota.
4. German racing driver Michael Schumacher won the Macau Grand Prix in a Reynard 903 VW in 1990, before making his Formula One debut in 1991 and going on to become a record seven-time F1 world champion.
The driver’s son, Mick Schumacher, followed in his father’s footsteps by competing in the race last year.
He finished 16th, but set the record for the fastest lap of the race, with a time of two minutes 16.651 seconds – achieving an average speed of 166.09km/h (103.20 miles per hour) – on lap 10 of the 15-lap race.
Schumacher is also back racing at this weekend’s event.
5. Despite the fact that the Macau Grand Prix is not an F1 circuit, a modern-day F1 car has driven on the famous Guia Circuit.
In 2003, former Macau F3 winner Ralph Firman sped around the circuit during a demonstration drive in a Jordan F1 racing car.
6. The circuit is featured in a number of racing video games, such as Project Gotham Racing 4 (2007), Race Pro (2009) and RaceRoom Racing Experience (2013)
7. To celebrate this weekend’s 65th Macau Grand Prix, a run was organised around the Guia Circuit on November 11 for the first time.
Nearly 2,000 runners took part in the event, which followed the course of the iconic 6.2km (3.8-mile) racing track.