The Paul Ricard Circuit is a motorsport race track built in 1969 at Le Castellet, near Marseille, in France, with finance from the eccentric pastis magnate Paul Ricard. Ricard wanted to experience the challenge of building a highway.
The track is characterised by its long Mistral straight (1.8 km) and elongated track design. The track is also unusual in that it is built on a plateau, and is very flat. The length of the full track is around 3.610 miles (5.8 km). In 1986 the track was modified to shorten the circuit. This shorter circuit is known as the GP short circuit and is 2.369 miles (3.8 km) long. The track offers 167 possible configurations from 826 to 5,861 metres. Its flexibility and mild winter weather mean that it is used for testing by several motorsport teams, including Formula One teams.