How the Las Vegas Grand Prix could alter the course of F1’s future

Henry Valantine
Welcome to Las Vegas emblazoned on a sign. Las Vegas Grand Prix F1 February 2022.

The famous 'Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas' sign on the edge of the city.

The organisation of the Las Vegas Grand Prix has been a “massive eye-opener” for Formula 1, according to Silverstone managing director Stuart Pringle – and he said he will “be going with a pen and paper” to see what he can learn from the inaugural running later this year.

Organisers have left no stone unturned in making the sport’s return to Sin City for the first time in 40 years one of the sporting spectacles of the season around the world, with a Saturday night, primetime race to come on Thanksgiving weekend in America – a peak time to watch sport in a market Formula 1 bosses are keen to make the most of moving forward.

The famous Las Vegas Strip will be closed all weekend as it will form a part of the track layout, and Formula 1 itself has bought some nearby land on which it will build permanent pit facilities ahead of November’s race.

Given the amount of work that is going in to getting the Las Vegas Grand Prix ready and up to the standard they expect, the sport has undergone a significant amount so far – and that’s unlikely to change any time soon.

“I think F1 have had a massive eye-opener about what it means to put an event on, that much I do know,” Pringle said to Autosport.

“Based on the questions we’ve had from the promotions team, talk about a shopping list.

“I’m not suggesting [traditional race promoters] are going to get a sympathetic ride [after this], but I think the whole experience has been enlightening for F1.”

Las Vegas Grand Prix will be learning experience for traditional tracks

The race has come under criticism for the extremely high ticket prices that are in place for the Las Vegas Grand Prix, with the expense required to host the weekend also among the highest of the season, given the amount of road closures, resurfacing and building required for the pit facilities ahead of November’s race.

It has also promised to be a weekend filled with glamour, with a night race in Las Vegas set to bring people from all over the world to Nevada to the street circuit.

And for the Silverstone managing director, despite the British circuit having been on the calendar since the beginning of Formula 1 history, he said he will be looking to absorb as much as possible from the experience of visiting the track – not least because of how American promoters operate compared to their European counterparts.

“I will be going with a pen and paper. I will find it fascinating to see how they tackle it,” Pringle revealed. “I’m sure it will be an amazing spectacle. I wish it every success. recommends

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“What we need is a healthy championship. We just want every race to be the best it can be. That is beneficial for all of us.

“What I don’t want as a promoter is a championship that gets stodgy or in any way unexciting.

“I’m also intrigued to see what it feels like to not have a support race bill.

“We recognise that Americans do sports entertainment much better than we do in Europe. And just because we’ve been doing this [at Silverstone] for 73 years, we’re not above learning off other people.”