King Charles predicted to make shock Las Vegas Grand Prix appearance

Oliver Harden
King Charles, Joe Biden

King Charles III poses for a picture with an elderly fan.

The Las Vegas Grand Prix has been praised as fit for a king, with American F1 icon Willy T Ribbs claiming he “would not be shocked” if King Charles III made an appearance at “the biggest race in racing history.”

After visiting Miami and Austin, Texas earlier in 2023, F1 will make its third and final trip to the United States this weekend for the Las Vegas GP.

The penultimate round of the season has been hailed as a milestone moment for the sport following the takeover by American giants Liberty Media in 2017, with a number of famous names set to be in attendance.

Las Vegas Grand Prix set to attract famous faces

Ribbs, who became the first black driver to test an F1 car in 1986, can barely contain his excitement for the race and believes it will be the biggest moment in F1’s entire 73-year history.

He told The Independent: “It is going to be mega – I would not be shocked if King Charles showed up.

“I would not be shocked because the A-list is going to be insane. You’re going to be bumping into more celebrities and sports stars than you will fans.

“Without any hyperbole, it will be the biggest race in racing history. That encompasses everything – the most talked about and the most glamorous. If you look at Las Vegas, it has a history of putting on the biggest event – whether it’s a boxing fight or an NFL game.”

Although the event itself is something of a dead rubber with Max Verstappen and Red Bull having long been crowned 2023 World Champions, Ribbs believes the opportunity to become the first winner of the Las Vegas GP will be a huge motivation for the competitors.

He explained: “Vegas is all about show. When the drivers get on the track they’re going to put on a show.

“For Max, he might have won the World Championship but he still has races to win. And he hasn’t won the most races in the history of F1, so there’s the incentive. It’s also just seeing who can knock him off.

“Who’s going to be the team and the driver to win the first Las Vegas Grand Prix? If I was the promoter, that’s how I’d be promoting it.

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“If I was talking to the drivers in the drivers’ meeting, that would be my message. The Championship is decided, but you guys go knock it out anyway and put on the best show for the fans and for TV.

“I think Vegas will knock it out of the park – and take Formula 1 in this country to the next level.”

F1 last visited Vegas in 1982, the second and last grand prix held at the widely unpopular circuit at the Caesars Palace hotel, which was likened to a car park and described as one of the worst tracks in the sport’s history.

Charles’s youngest son, Harry, is a renowned F1 fan and recently attended the United States GP at Austin, watching the race from the Mercedes garage.

Harry previously congratulated Lewis Hamilton over team radio following his second title triumph at Abu Dhabi in 2014.

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