|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
GT World Challenge Europe (2020-present)
FFSA GT (1997-present)
F1 French Grand Prix (1991-2008)
French motorcycle Grand Prix (1992)
FIA WTCC Race of France (2005-2006)
World Sportscar Championship (1991-1992)
Bol d'Or (2000-2014)
FIA GT (2000-2005)
Superleague Formula (2009-2010)
|Grand Prix Circuit (2003-present)|
|Length||4.411 km (2.741 mi)|
|Race lap record||1:15.377 (Michael Schumacher, Ferrari F2004, 2004, Formula One)|
|National Circuit (2003-present)|
|Length||2.684 km (1.668 mi)|
|Club Circuit (1992-present)|
|Length||1.727 km (1.073 mi)|
|Grand Prix Circuit (1992-2002)|
|Length||4.250 km (2.641 mi)|
|Race lap record||1:15.045 (David Coulthard, McLaren MP4-17, 2002, Formula One)|
|Grand Prix Circuit (1989-1991)|
|Length||4.271 km (2.654 mi)|
|Race lap record||1:19.168 (Nigel Mansell, Williams FW14, 1991, Formula One)|
Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours is a 4.411 km (2.741 mi) motor racing circuit located in central France, near the towns of Magny-Cours and Nevers, some 250 km (160 mi) from Paris and 240 km (150 mi) from Lyon.
It staged the Formula One French Grand Prix from 1991 (succeeding Circuit Paul Ricard) to 2008, and the 24-hour Bol d'Or motorcycle endurance events from 2000 to 2014 (succeeded by Circuit Paul Ricard). It hosted the French motorcycle Grand Prix in 1992, and the Superbike World Championship in 1991 and annually since 2003.
Magny-Cours has hosted several additional international championships, like the World Sportscar Championship, World Touring Car Championship, FIA GT Championship, World Series by Renault and Formula 3 Euroseries. Also, the FFSA GT Championship has visited the circuit since 1997.
A campus of the French engineering college Institut supérieur de l'automobile et des transports is also located on the circuit, as well as the museum Conservatoire de la monoplace française.
Commonly dubbed Magny-Cours, it was built in 1960 by Jean Bernigaud and was home to the prestigious Winfield racing school (École de Pilotage Winfield), which produced drivers such as François Cevert, Jacques Laffite and Didier Pironi. However, in the 1980s the track fell into disrepair and was not used for international motor racing until it was purchased by the Departemental Conseil de la Nièvre.
The circuit was re-designed in 2003 and used for a wide range of events include various sports and commercial use. For the 2003 French Grand Prix, the final corner and chicane were changed in an effort to increase overtaking, with little effect.
Bernie Ecclestone originally confirmed that F1 would not return to Magny-Cours in 2008, instead moving to an alternative location possibly in Paris. However in a striking U-turn, it was revealed that the 2008 French Grand Prix would take place at Magny-Cours with the release of the official calendar in July 2007.
In May 2008, Ecclestone confirmed that Magny-Cours would stop hosting the French Grand Prix after the 2008 race, suggesting that he was looking into the possibility of hosting the French Grand Prix on the streets of Paris. The venue suffered from poor attendances due to its remote location, poor access and insufficient accommodation.
In June 2008, the provisional calendar for the 2009 season was released, and a French Grand Prix at Magny-Cours appeared on it, scheduled for 28 June. However, in October 2008 the 2009 French Grand Prix was cancelled after the French Motorsports Federation (FFSA) withdrew financing for the event. In 2009 the track hosted its first Superleague Formula event. It also hosted a second event in 2010.
The circuit was used as part of stage three of the 2014 Paris-Nice cycling race, with the peloton completing almost a full lap of the circuit - in the reverse direction to its motorsport use - before the finish on the front straight.
The track nowadays is a smooth circuit with good facilities for the teams, although restricted access prevents spectators from reaching many parts of the circuit. Unusually, many corners are modelled on famous turns from other circuits, and are named after those circuits, i.e.. the fast Estoril corner (turn 3), the Adelaide hairpin (turn 5) and the Nürburgring and Imola chicanes (turns 7 and 12 respectively). It has a mix of slow hairpins and high-speed chicane sections which includes a long fast straight into the first-gear Adelaide hairpin, the best overtaking opportunity on the circuit. The circuit is very flat with negligible change in elevation (only a small valley at the Estoril corner and a slight hill near the Lycee corner).
The circuit provides few overtaking opportunities, despite modifications in 2003, which means the races here are commonly regarded as quite uneventful. Formula 1 races at Magny-Cours tend to have a processional nature, with most overtaking occurring during pit stop sequences.
More varied racing occurs when it rains, such as in the 1999 race, which was interrupted by a downpour. After a restart, most top contenders developed problems, which paved the way for Heinz-Harald Frentzen to claim a surprising victory in his Jordan.
Although the Bol d'Or 24-hour motorcycle endurance race was held at Magny-Cours for several years, it returned to the more popular Circuit Paul Ricard in 2015, which held the mentioned race before Magny-Cours.
The official fastest race lap records at the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours are listed as:
|Grand Prix Circuit: 4.412 km (2003-present)|
|F1||1:15.377||Michael Schumacher||Ferrari F2004||2004 French Grand Prix|
|GP2||1:23.405||Roldán Rodríguez||Dallara GP2/05||2007 Magny-Cours GP2 Series round|
|Superleague Formula||1:26.722||Yelmer Buurman||Panoz DP09||2010 Magny-Cours Superleague Formula round|
|Formula Renault 3.5 Series||1:27.543||Filipe Albuquerque||Dallara T05||2007 Magny-Cours Formula Renault 3.5 Series round|
|F3000||1:30.924||Giorgio Pantano||Lola B02/50||2003 Magny-Cours F3000 round|
|F2 (2009-2012)||1:32.085||Miki Monrás||Williams JPH1||2011 Magny-Cours FTwo round|
|Formula 3||1:32.972||Sébastien Buemi||Dallara F305||2007 Magny-Cours F3 Euro Series round|
|Formula Renault Eurocup||1:33.943||Franco Colapinto||Tatuus FR-19||2020 Magny-Cours Formula Renault Eurocup round|
|World SBK||1:36.374||Jonathan Rea||Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR||2021 Magny-Cours World SBK round|
|GT3||1:36.769||Dries Vanthoor||Audi R8 LMS Evo||2021 Magny-Cours GT World Challenge Europe Round|
|GT1||1:38.625||Matteo Bobbi||Ferrari 550-GTS Maranello||2003 FIA GT Magny-Cours 500km|
|Formula 4||1:39.820||Hugh Barter||Mygale M14-F4||2021 2nd Magny-Cours French Formula 4 round|
|World SSP||1:41.185||Sandro Cortese||Yamaha YZF-R6||2018 Magny-Cours World SSP round|
|N-GT||1:42.916||Lucas Luhr||Porsche 911 (996) GT3-RSR||2004 FIA GT Magny-Cours 500km|
|GT4||1:45.569||Anthony Beltoise||Audi R8 LMS GT4 Evo||2021 Magny-Cours French GT4 round|
|WTCC||1:50.447||Jörg Müller||BMW 320i||2005 FIA WTCC Race of France|
|Supersport 300||1:52.927||Tom Booth-Amos||Kawasaki Ninja 400||2021 Magny-Cours Supersport 300 round|
|Grand Prix Circuit: 4.250 km (1992-2002)|
|F1||1:15.045||David Coulthard||McLaren MP4-17||2002 French Grand Prix|
|Group C||1:20.346||Yannick Dalmas||Peugeot 905 Evo 1 Bis||1992 500 km of Magny-Cours|
|F3000||1:27.802||Tomas Enge||Lola B02/50||2002 Magny-Cours F3000 round|
|SR1||1:29.780||Val Hillebrand||Dome S101||2002 FIA Sportscar Championship Magny-Cours|
|DTM/ITC||1:34.918||Giancarlo Fisichella||Alfa Romeo 155 V6 TI||1996 ITC Magny-Cours round|
|GT1||1:35.313||Jamie Campbell-Walter||Lister Storm||2002 FIA GT Magny-Cours 500km|
|SR2||1:35.812||Massimo Saccomanno||Lucchini SR2-99||2002 FIA Sportscar Championship Magny-Cours|
|500cc||1:39.273||Wayne Gardner||Yamaha YZR500||1992 French motorcycle Grand Prix|
|250cc||1:41.418||Loris Reggiani||Aprilia RSV 250||1992 French motorcycle Grand Prix|
|N-GT||1:41.441||Christophe Bouchut||Porsche 911 (996) GT3-R||2000 FIA GT Magny-Cours 500km|
|125cc||1:46.674||Ezio Gianola||Honda RS125R||1992 French motorcycle Grand Prix|
|Grand Prix Circuit: 4.271 km (1989-1991)|
|F1||1:19.168||Nigel Mansell||Williams FW14||1991 French Grand Prix|
|Group C||1:25.823||Philippe Alliot||Peugeot 905 Evo 1 Bis||1991 430 km of Magny-Cours|
The Nevers area has an oceanic climate that is still influenced by its far inland position. With a yearly precipitation of over 800 millimetres (31 in) on average, Magny-Cours is theoretically prone to rain affecting proceedings, although in the Formula One era, it often evaded the rainfall. There was one notable exception, when both the qualifying and the race of 1999 saw a fully wet track. With the Grand Prix being held in the middle of summer, tyre wear through high asphalt temperatures was possible. Magny-Cours' main event post-Grand Prix era, Superbike World Championship is being held in autumn and as a result sees colder temperatures.
|Climate data for Nevers (1981-2010 averages)|
|Record high °C (°F)||17.2
|Average high °C (°F)||6.7
|Average low °C (°F)||0.2
|Record low °C (°F)||-25
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||62.0
|Average precipitation days||12.0||10.0||10.3||10.7||11.5||8.8||8.3||8.3||8.4||11.0||11.6||11.7||122.7|
|Average relative humidity (%)||87||82||78||74||77||76||74||77||80||85||87||87||80.3|
|Mean monthly sunshine hours||65.5||85.6||147.7||170.3||197.9||223.2||235.0||227.5||180.0||121.0||65.4||54.9||1,774|
|Source 1: Météo France|
|Source 2: Infoclimat.fr (humidity, 1961-1990)|