AS FORMULA 1 GAINS UNPRECEDENTED TRACTION IN AMERICAN CULTURE, FANS IN LAS VEGAS LOOK FORWARD TO HOSTING THE SPORT’S NEWEST GRAND PRIX, SCHEDULED FOR 2023
BY MATTHEW MIZRACH
Despite maintaining steady popularity in Europe since its inaugural season, Formula 1 has experienced a much slower start over here in the states. Contending with American competitors like NASCAR has proven to be an uphill battle for F1 – that is, until recently. After the sport was taken over by U.S. media giant Liberty Media in 2017, expanding the American market became a key focus. This effort culminated in the premier of Net ix’s Formula 1: Drive to Survive series during the height of the COVID-era lockdowns, a circumstance that proved to be incredibly fortuitous for the league. Millions of home-bound American viewers became obsessed with the adrenaline-fueled races and behind-the scenes-footage of dramatic rivalries between drivers like Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Red Bulls’ Max Verstappen.
F1 executives immediately capitalized on the newly explosive interest for the sport; this year alone they’ve made pit stops in two different U.S. cities, with sold-out Grand Prixs held in Austin and Miami. It was also recently announced that in 2023, F1 will be taking over the busy streets of Las Vegas with a brand new 3.8-mile track that will cut through the heart of Sin City. Race engineers produced 31 different layout variations before agreeing on a finalized version, with difficulties ranging from the sweltering heat to unforgivingly tight streets and turns. Grand Prix attendees will witness fan-favorites like Mercedes, Ferrari, and Red Bull vie for dominance in a wildly competitive 50-lap race. Drivers will zoom past historic landmarks, casinos, and mega-hotels at speeds of 200+ mph, and the circuit will culminate with a 2-kilometer stretch of track running down the famous Vegas Strip.
F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix