Termas de Rio Hondo
International Circuit, Argentina
MotoGP 2018 Round Two
Sunday 8 April 2018
The MotoGP riders, teams and Dorna staff fly to South America, to the Termas de Rio Hondo International Circuit, Argentina.
Free practice starts Friday 6th April. The race is on Sunday 8 April 2018.
Termas de Rio Hondo Circuit is only 6 kilometres from the city which gives the venue its name, in the Province of Santiago del Estero. It was officially inaugurated on May 11, 2008, with the Argentina´s Touring Car Racing championship. In 2012, reconditioning, enlargement and modernization of the circuit began, with the purpose of turning it into Latin America's most modern, safe and vibrant circuit.
Termas de Rio Hondo Circuit has a superb mix of fast straights, flowing turns and two tight hairpins to challenge even the most seasoned rider.
It consists of 14 turns; 6 left corners and 8 right corners with a long backstraight of over a kilometre running in a clockwise direction. The eclectic mix of track features means no single bike will suit the circuit perfectly, as acceleration, top speed, and corning speeds make for an exciting and competitive race.
MotoGP returned to Argentina in 2014 after a long 15-year break, with the Termas de Rio Hondo circuit in the northern province of Santiago del Estero becoming the host venue for the Gran Premio de la Republica Argentina - a race that had previously been held in Buenos Aires.
Indeed, the first ever Argentinian Grand Prix took place in 1961 close to Argentina's capital, and was the first time that a GP had been run outside Europe. In the modern era Termas de Rio Hondo continues the legacy of motorcycle racing in Argentina. The annual visit to the South American country creates a festival atmosphere, providing a spectacular show on and off the track.
Why we love Argentina and Santiago del Estero
Blessed with vast areas of outstanding natural beauty, and with a capital city amongst the coolest in the world, Argentina is a superb place to visit.
The country is huge, stretching from the southernmost province of Tierra del Fuego to the Tropic of Capricorn in the north, and a wild Atlantic coastline in the east to the western plateau of the Andes, meaning it provides many epic adventures.
In Argentina you will discover penguins, condors, flamingos, pumas, armadillos, and many more species as you explore mountains, lakes, lush groves, icebergs even, and waterfalls, jungles and forest in the wonderful network of parks and reserves.
Buenos Aires is great for shopping, its thriving nightlife and diverse architecture, as well as some 'good old' people-watching. Argentina's other main cities are also worth checking out; such as Cordoba, Salta, Rosario, and Ushuaia, which is the world's most southerly city and enjoys a beautiful waterfront vista.
The town of Termas de Rio Hondo has a population of just under 30,000 people but supports a plethora of hotel options as the local natural spas are a popular attraction.
Santiago del Estero, the capital of the province, is a city of the same name, which has a population of over 240,000 inhabitants, making it the twelfth largest city in the country. It is the oldest city in Argentina, founded in 1553, showing signs of its Spanish colonial past.
Santiago del Estero is a relaxed and warm-hearted city, known elsewhere in Argentina for its folk music and laid back ambience, the main focal point being the pleasant central plaza, home to Santiago's attractive cathedral. The city's Parque Aguirre, an extensive eucalyptus-filled park on the riverside.
The Vicecomodoro Angel de la Paz Aragones Airport connects Santiago del Estero to Buenos Aires; otherwise it is a 1000 kilometres, 12 hour drive to and from the capital.
Exploring Termas de Rio Hondo
The town of Termas de Rio Hondo itself is an agreeable destination, with natural thermal baths and a man-made lake. There are hotels specialising in spa treatments and its many restaurants all catering for the streams of visitors who stop by each year.
The Argentine parrillada or asado is a barbecue of grilled meats cooked over an open fire, with beef, pork, ribs and sausages all on the menu, typically accompanied by the delicious chimichurri sauce and best served with a glass of Malbec wine. the locals in Termas de Rio Hondo are just as enthusiastic about steak as their compatriots elsewhere in this huge country.
Savory or sweet empanadas (pies or pasties), grilled Provoleta cheese and dulce de leche on your dessert!
Yerba mate is a herbal-infusion - often drunk communally - and is another must-try on the Argentine menu.
Did you know?
You may hear Quechua being spoken in this part of the country; an indigenous Inca language used by about 100,000 local residents. Indeed this is the southernmost point which the Quechua language reaches and it is not known how or when the language arrived in this part of South America.
Last years Race Result
GRAN PREMIO MOTUL DE LA REPÚBLICA ARGENTINA
MotoGP Race Classification 2017
Termas de Río Hondo, Sunday, 9 April 2017
My race report, photos and rider interviews will be here soon after the winner takes the flag!
Be sure to come back soon.
- Roland Potter