Autodromo Internacional Algarve
The Autodromo Internacional Algarve takes its name from the surrounding region, the Algarve, in southern Portugal. It opened in November 2008 for the last round of the World Superbike Championship, and covers over 300 hectares in the hills around the town of Portimão.
The 4692-metre track consists of continuous ups and downs that make it very technical and challenging. It has many blind and banked turns. The main straight is almost a kilometre long and leads into the first two fast right turns, followed by turn 3, the first major deceleration. It is a very slow right turn, often with understeer.
The track continues uphill towards turn 4, a quick bend to the left whose exit is hidden from view and that leads into a short return straight. At the end, a hairpin bend to the left leads to the fastest part of the track. You accelerate into turns 6 and 7, gaining a lot of speed before decelerating for turn 8, to the right, which gets tighter and tighter towards the end.
From there it is uphill all the way to turn 9: before this fast left-hand bend that you take at full speed the track goes back downhill and then quickly climbs again, creating a powerful compression. The deceleration of turn 10, to the right, is the most challenging: at this point, the track veers downhill, so you can't see the apex.
The circuit again heads downhill towards turn 11. The latter is not especially difficult and precedes heavy braking before turn 12. The last part of the track includes two long right-hand bends: the first is banked, while the second, the one that leads into the finishing straight, is very bumpy.