Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Architecture Of Speed

Anyone who followed this year's Formula One season, saw the best the sport has had to offer in the last 20 years. There was a championship decided at the last race of the season, behind-the-scenes spy drama, the clashing of driver egos, a couple of wild races in the pouring rain, and the premier season of a dashing young driver from the UK who has decided to move to Switzerland to avoid all the attention he's getting (and pay less taxes).

But what I find myself drawn to in these races is the remarkable architecture displayed at the road courses around the world. Several in Asia are especially striking in their grandstand and concourse designs.
The German architectural firm of Hermann Tilke has designed many of these tracks. This is one in Sepang:

And this one in Shanghai:

There is something surreal about these modern structures rising up out of open spaces, and some of the grandstands are just plain cool.
You can see more photos and designs at the firm's website.