Circuit Moulay El Hassan is the Premier Racing Venue in Morocco

November 11, 2016
Alexander S

  • Marrakech Circuit
  • Marrakech circuit
  • Marrakech WTCC

The Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan, named after the Crown Prince of Morocco, is a semi-permanent street racing course in the city of Marrakech.

Temporary street circuit in Marrakech

Morocco does not have a long history of motorsport and this track, mostly known as Marrakech Street Circuit or Marrakech Racetrack, was supposed to be the driving force of change. Since 2009, when the first race was held, the things became better and various racing series are slowly starting to come in Marrakech.

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The construction of Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan

The circuit operated by MGP joined forces with D3 Motorsports, a company responsible for creating some famous street courses like Surfers Paradise and Durban, and in relatively short time the first track in the modern city’s district was finished. More than 2.500 concrete blocks with debris fences were used to ensure the safety of the drivers and the spectators.

Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan – From simple layout to the challenging race circuit

That anticlockwise ran track was 4.624 km long. It was a simple, almost oval layout, with a hairpin at one end and a couple of chicanes punctuating the very narrow straights, making a total of 15 turns. Lap record time holder is Narain Karthikeyan who set the time 1:28.450 during 2013 Auto GP race.

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Map of the circuit

The new layout of the Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan prepared in 2016 by famous F1 track designer Hermann Tilke is completely different than the previous one. Some parts of the old layout were incorporated in the new 3 km long track which has 14 turns. The new layout looks more familiar to the permanent racing tracks and is more demanding to both cars and drivers.

The WTCC round of Morocco was the main event

Over the years a permanent pit and paddock facilities were built at Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan instead of assembly buildings. The circuit is now described as a semi-permanent FIA Grade 2 track with a capacity of 10.000 spectators. The aim of making a semi-permanent facility was to encourage local racing enthusiasts to develop and eventually to try to take a part in some competitions.

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Part of the old track in Marrakech

The World Touring Cars Championship cars were the first who had an opportunity to test a track in Marrakech in 2009. It was the first international motorsport event in Morocco since 1958 Formula Moroccan Grand Prix. Since 2009, the WTCC round is regular in Marrakech, and only in 2011 the race wasn’t held due to financial troubles.

Arrival of Formula E race is a huge boost

The Auto GP series also were held at Marrakech circuit from 2012 to 2014, while the FIA Formula E World Championship arrived at this venue for the first time in November of 2016 and then again in January 2018. For Formula E races, the track was slightly modified and was 2.97 km long with 12 turns.

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Formula 2 race in Marrakech was held in 2010

The FIA Formula 2 Championship race was held in 2010 but immediately was thrown out of calendar after being unsuitable for that type of racing. Ricardo Teixeira survived a spectacular crash in that race. His car was launched airborne, flying completely over the chicane and three other cars, before crashing into the retaining wall. Luckily, no one was injured.

Getting to Marrakech

The city of Marrakech is one of Morocco’s most important and most popular tourist destinations, so you will have no trouble to find accommodation.

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Marrakech wants to become a more important motorsports venue and the WTCC race was the first step

The Circuit International Automobile Moulay El Hassan is located on the outskirts of the city, to the south, only 5 km from the Marrakech-Menara International airport which also has good connections with Casablanca.

Address: Route d’Ourika, Marrakech, Morocco
Phone: +212 659 639849


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