Assetto Corsa F1 Madrid 2026

2026 Madrid F1 Circuit: Race It In Assetto Corsa Already

Assetto Corsa

The event has just been announced, but the 2026 Madrid F1 circuit is already a thing in Assetto Corsa. A basic version of the new Grand Prix venue is available on RaceDepartment, courtesy of “Nukedrop” Tyrone Hesbrook.

It feels like the debate about yet another street circuit joining the Formula One calendar has not even reached its boiling point already, and yet, the track in question is already driveable in sim racing. Assetto Corsa track modder “Nukedrop” Tyrone Hesbrook has created a basic version of the Madrid F1 circuit that will host the Spanish Grand Prix from 2026 onwards.

The 2026 Madrid F1 circuit features public roads, but also a purpose-built section in its second sector. Image credit: racingcircuits.info

Many fans are not fond of the idea that Madrid is going to replace Barcelona-Catalunya, although the future of the venue in F1 is not quite clear yet. However, following the changes of Sauber/Alfa Romeo and AlphaTauri to names filled to the brim with sponsors, many consider F1’s foray into the Spanish capital another sign of escalating commercialization of their favourite sport.

2026 Madrid F1 Circuit: Drive It Two Years Before The Grand Prix

Still, having a driveable version available for Assetto Corsa over two years before the Madrid F1 circuit is scheduled to materialize is commendable. Released merely a day after the announcement, “Nukedrop” used the published layout and actual maps of Madrid as a base. “Is this super accurate to how the real track will be? No, it’s just to give an idea of the flow of the circuit“, he states in the mod description.

Those expecting eye candy will be disappointed as a result, but it is interesting to see how the track might turn out at this point in time already. Much like many of F1’s recent street circuits, Madrid is rather fast, which is aided by the fact that it is technically a hybrid circuit. While most of the track is laid out on public roads, there is a purpose-built section planned.

Assetto Corsa 2026 Madrid F1 Circuit Valdebeba Corner
The super fast Valdebebas corner is likely going to be the party piece of the 2026 Madrid F1 circuit.

Mostly situated in what will be the second sector, the section features a long right-hander called Valdebebas. In the Assetto Corsa version, this is slightly banked – should this carry over to the real track, it could be one of the fastest turns on the F1 calendar.

More Flow Than First Meets The Eye

The Madrid F1 circuit has some flow, but surprisingly little overtaking opportunities. At least not many spots look like it. Turn 11 following Valdebebas could be one, Turn 17 might be another. But from our first few laps, it feels like Madrid is going to be rather difficult to pass at.

What is not immediately apparent from simply looking at the layout is that the circuit features interesting elevation change. This caught us out a few times when trying to learn the track, especially at the Turn 7-8-9 complex. This follows a long, fast section that passes under the nearby motorway. A crest in the middle part of the sequence can send you into the outside barriers rather quickly if you are not careful.

Turns 1 and 2 at the upcoming Madrid F1 circuit have some room for errors – and track limits arguments.

Other sequences, like Turns 1 and 2 have a relatively good amount of space to account for mistakes. The track is marked by curbs at this point, also making it a spot that is likely going to spark track limits discussions. Fun!

Madrid F1 Circuit in Assetto Corsa: Updates Along The Way?

Despite all the flack the new layout has been getting, our first impression of the circuit is actually quite fun. At least in sim racing, that is. Whether or not it will deliver exciting racing remains to be seen, but it may well be one of these tracks that is spectacular for last-minute quali runs. And the thought of side-by-side action at Valdebeba is quite intriguing as well – if cars can actually run the corner alongside each other, that is.

As more info on the track becomes available, the Madrid F1 circuit for Assetto Corsa is likely going to be updated accordingly. “Nukedrop” has done so before with the Las Vegas Grand Prix circuit. Originally released on April 1, 2022, the track has last been updated in November of 2023 – on the very day of the actual Grand Prix.

Jarama: Formula One’s Former Madrid Venue

The Madrid F1 circuit will not be the first time the Formula One circus will make station at the Spanish capital, or rather close to it. Between 1968 and 1981, the nearby Circuito del Jarama hosted the Spanish Grand Prix nine times, alternating with Montjuïc in Barcelona. In fact, Jarama is a mere 20-minute drive away from the new venue.

Jarama in its 1966-1979 configuration, as used for eight of its nine Spanish Grand Prix appearances as part of the World Championship. Image credit: racingcircuits.info

Winners at Jarama include Graham Hill (1968), Jackie Stewart (1970), Emerson Fittipaldi (1972), Niki Lauda (1974), James Hunt (1976), Mario Andretti (1977 & 1978), Patrick Depailler (1979) and Gilles Villeneuve (1981). During that time, it was also held as a non-championship race twice, with Jim Clark taking the honors in 1967, and Alan Jones being victorious in 1980.

With the move to the new Madrid F1 circuit, Catalunya’s history as host of the Spanish Grand Prix will end after 35 races. It may not be goodbye forever for Catalunya – we will find out whether or not the Madrid track will actually be around for all ten years of its brand-new contract.

What are your thoughts on the new Madrid F1 circuit? Let us know on Twitter @OverTake_gg or in the comments below!

Lifelong motorsport enthusiast and sim racing aficionado, walking racing history encyclopedia. I have been working in sim racing since 2021 after previously working with pro and amateur sports teams and athletes for a daily newspaper in Wolfsburg. Nothing gets me more excited than motor racing, especially with the beastly machines of the past. A third pedal and h-shifter are not just options for a rig, they are mandatory to me. Avid fan of the IndyCar series (modern and CART/pre-split).