The Main Event
Remember when Formula One smashed into Austin in 2012, and all the maneuvering to put the U.S. Grand Prix at the end of the season, away from the hottest months? Mid-80s and blue skies is hardly the bleak depths of winter, but it’s ideal conditions for possibly the most challenging race since the sport returned to American shores.
On the track, it’s a strange fight between comrades. After a dominating 2015 season, British driver Lewis Hamilton finds himself in the unenviable position of chasing his Mercedes teammate, Germany’s Nico Rosberg. Together they sewed up the Constructors’ Championship (awarded to the two-driver team with the highest points) on Oct. 9 in Japan, but now they battle it out for top driver. It’s hard to say this won’t be Rosberg’s year: With a 33-point lead, even if Hamilton wins all four remaining races, if Rosberg comes in second each time he’ll still take the title. And no one is saying Rosberg will settle for second place.
But don’t count Hamilton out either. With three wins at the Circuit of the Americas and its signature sweeping hairpin turn one, Austin has always been good to him, and clear skies could be a good sign for a Hamilton resurgence.
The mild weekend is also perfect for a big addition off the track. It’s not a Grand Prix without music, and it’s tough to think that COTA could have picked a bigger concert for racegoers than Taylor Swift. Yup, T-Swizzle is a real change of gear after more dad rock-friendly performers like Kid Rock and Elton John, but there’s some method in that madness. Every F1 event has a concert, but it’s normally Sunday night, after the race. Swift will rock out Saturday, and the hope is that her fans will stick around to check out Sunday’s high-stakes racing action (and maybe check out Usher and the Roots before heading home). Fri.-Sun., Oct. 21-23. – Richard Whittaker.
Circuit of the Americas, 9201 Circuit of the Americas Blvd., 512/301-6600
The Home Teams
Vs. East Texas Baptist: Fri., Oct. 21, 7:30pm. Vs. Letourneau: Sat., Oct. 22, 7:30pm.
Vs. East Texas Baptist: Fri., Oct. 21, 5pm. Vs. Letourneau: Sat., Oct. 22, 5pm. Free.
Vs. Texas Tech: Fri., Oct. 21, 7pm. Vs. West Virginia: Sun., Oct. 23, 5pm. $6-10.
Vs. Temple College: Fri., Oct. 21, 5pm. Vs. McLennan Community College: Thu., Oct. 27, 7pm..
Recreation & Fitness
is Austin's premier table tennis facility featuring 16 tables, wi-fi, a weight room, a lounge, and much more. Austin Table Tennis Club, 8956 Research Blvd.
The Rowing Dock stays open late on the third Friday of each month for a pleasant night-time paddle. 8-10pm. $5 per hour.
Rowing Dock, 2418 Stratford
Friday, Nov. 7, marked the opening of North America's first surf park and it's right here in Austin (well, Del Valle). Whether you're a beginner, seasoned vet, or a young one, they have waves appropriately sized for your skill level. They'll also offer food (tacos!), coaches on hand, and a surf shop and non-surfers can watch from the shore for $5. Open Tuesdays through Sundays 11am-7pm and Mondays 2-6pm.. $60-90 (surf passes), $65-190 (coaching sessions and clinics).
NLand Surf Park, 4836 E. Hwy. 71, Del Valle, 512/806-1900
This fundraising shoot is one of the biggest of its kind in the country and will raise funds for Wonders & Worries who provide mental health support for kids with a seriously ill parent. 8:30am-1:30pm.
TDS Exotic Game Ranch, 11508 Carl Rd., Buda
Remember, slow and steady wins the race. Thursdays and Fridays, 8pm. Free.
Little Woodrow's Southpark Meadows (Thursday) and West Sixth (Friday)
All leagues are coed with happy-hour fun following all games.
Runs, Walks, & Rides
Check website for fun biking adventures.
For those looking to learn more about Austin and get some exercise at the same time, this might do the trick. Choose the type of run, the mileage, and when you'd like to do it, and they'll handle the rest. Advance purchase required.
has a plethora of available walks, hikes, and more.