With a recent change of schedule to the middle of the racing season, the Portuguese round of the World Superbike calendar is a superb place to catch a weekend’s racing and soak up some guaranteed summer sun!
Situated just 45 minutes away from Faro airport, Portimao circuit is right in the heart of the balmy Algarve coastline, and a firm favourite of riders and fans alike. A cheap flight from a UK airport will get you to Portugal in a few hours, and you’ll be treated to magnificent weather, fantastic food, and some exhilarating bike racing, all at a very reasonable price!
The Portimao Circuit
Portimao race track is part of a fairly new motorsport project in the sunny and vibrant Algarve, towards the south of Portugal. It’s a high-spec, safe, and feature packed place that’s a favourite of fans and riders alike.
Portimao’s layout is something of a roller coaster ride: It features a wide, fast flowing design with 9 right hand turns and 6 left. Tricky cambers and undulating straights make this circuit a real crowd pleaser, and because of its huge run off areas, it’s a safe place for riders who happen to take a tumble!
Arriving In The Algarve
If you’re travelling to Portugal to watch the race, you’d be well advised to extend your trip to a week or more and pack in some of the region’s highlights before race weekend.
When you arrive in Faro, you’ll instantly notice that it has a deeply Portuguese compared to more touristy and resort orientated towns further down the coast. There’s a plethora of ancient buildings, pedestrian lanes and outdoor cafes, and the green parks and well maintained marina offer some much needed respite from the intense Algarve heat.
Eating And Drinking
Faro is a fantastic place to socialise: 8,000 students make their home here each year, and there are a multitude of eating and drinking options nestled within the ancient alleyways and lanes, featuring freshly caught local seafood and fantastic local wines.
Further along the coast, you can find a host of dining options that all show hints of Portugal’s seafaring past, and the many cultures that have left their mark on the local cuisine.
Places To Stay
Your budget will tend to stretch quite a way in Portugal, and Faro is no exception. If you’re staying in town, Hotel Eva Faro has fantastic views across the city from its rooftop pool, and excellent amenities and dining options as well.
If you’re heading out of town and along the Algarve coast, their are hundreds of options for accommodation. The Formosa Park and Vale de Lobo Golf course areas offer plenty of lovely spots to stay, and feature some beautiful pine forested scenery and moorish architecture as well.
Booking Your Holiday
If you’re interested in a Portuguese bike racing holiday this summer, you’ll find a whole host of cheap flights and accommodation with a quick internet search. For race tickets, we strongly recommend going with a trusted UK vendor. A spokesperson for www.bigrockholidays.com gave their advice: “It’s always best to book your tickets well in advance, from an established UK company. Never turn up hoping to buy tickets from a seller outside the racetrack”.
The Portuguese round of the World Superbike season books up quickly. Start planning your dream holiday now to avoid missing out!
Wendy Lin is a freelance writer and entrepreneur. She enjoys taking her boys to motorsport holidays and sailing with her family.