Russian Grand Prix 2017

Formula One returns to the Sochi Autodrom this April, as the Russian Grand Prix rolls into town. Located in the popular Black Sea resort of the same name, the Autodrom is a street circuit which winds around many of the eye-catching venues that were built for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. With seating for up to 55,000 spectators, the track offers an electric atmosphere for race fans and drivers alike.

The 5.848km circuit was designed by renowned architect Hermann Tilke, with the track integrated into the Olympic Park infrastructure. It is currently the third-longest circuit on the Formula One calendar, behind Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium and Silverstone in the United Kingdom. The track runs in a clockwise direction, and consists of 12 right and six left-hand corners. Despite having a relatively short history, the venue has proved popular among drivers, with its combination of high-speed and technical sections making for a thrilling race.

Sochi Autodrom hosted the inaugural Russian Grand Prix in October 2014, as part of a seven year agreement to bring Formula One to the country. The current lap record of 1:39.094 was achieved in 2016 by Germany’s Nico Rosberg, while driving for the Mercedes team. Rosberg finished first in last year’s race, with teammate Lewis Hamilton taking second place – a result which was repeated in the overall driver’s championship at the end of the season.

Natural Beauty

Known as “the summer capital of Russia”, Sochi is one of the country’s largest and most popular holiday destinations. The city enjoys more than 200 days of sunshine a year, and is renowned for its beautiful scenery. The warm waters of the Black Sea and high mountains of the Caucasus provide a spectacular backdrop for what is sure to be a fascinating race.

The Russian Grand Prix takes place on Sunday April 30, 2017. For further information on the build-up to the race, please visit the Formula One website.



Flying to Sochi

The primary airport for attending the Russian Grand Prix is Sochi International Airport (IATA: AER, ICAO: URSS). Sochi International serves as an Airport of Entry (AoE), with customs and immigration available on-site 24/7. A full range of General Aviation (GA) services are provided. The airport is located just 6km north of the Sochi Autodrom. The nearest alternatives are Anapa Airport (IATA: AAQ, ICAO: URKA), and Krasnodar International Airport (IATA: KRR, ICAO: URKK). However both are more than 300km away from the venue, making Sochi the most convenient choice.

Applying for a Landing Permit

All private non-revenue and charter (non-scheduled commercial) flights to Russia require landing permits. The minimum lead times for processing are one working day for private flights, and three working days for charter flights. The Russian Civil Aviation Authority requires the following documents to be submitted with the application:

  • Airworthiness and registration certificate
  • Worldwide insurance certificate
  • Noise certificate
  • Airworthiness review certificate
  • Airport slot confirmation

Please note that in case of any schedule, origin/destination, routing, call-sign or registry changes, a permit revision will be required.

Airport slots, parking and refueling

Airport slots are mandatory at URSS and should be requested in advance, particularly during peak periods. The following documents are required:

  • Flight schedule
  • Aircraft information
  • Complete passenger list
  • Name of the company for which the flight is being performed

Usually, parking is automatically confirmed once an airport slot has been approved. However current NOTAMs state that business aviation flights (including helicopters) with non-VVIP passengers will be allowed a maximum of two hours on the ground during the Grand Prix period. This means refueling at URRS is not really an option, as aircraft will be dropping their passengers and leaving almost immediately afterwards. If the time on ground exceeds the two hour limit, the authorities will inform the Russian FAA of the NOTAM violation and a heavy fine will be imposed. For this reason, Anapa (URKA) and Krasnodar (URKK) airports are suggested as alternates for parking and refueling.

CIQ and Visa Procedures

Customs, immigration and quarantine clearance at URSS takes around 10-15 minutes, and is conducted in the VIP terminal for passengers and crew. Customs declarations and immigration cards should be completed in advance, ready to be presented to the officers on duty.

All passengers and crew must obtain Russian visas prior to landing. Anyone arriving without a valid visa will face a fine in the region of $100 USD, while the company responsible for the flight can be fined up to $5,000 USD.

Arrange Your Trip with Jetex

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We are on standby 24/7 to process any request. Our dedicated operations staff will take care of all necessary permits and permissions, fuel uplift and ground handling arrangements.

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