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Formula 1 fans may have to fork out colossal sums to watch the inaugural Las Vegas next year.
The sport’s gravitation to high-profile circuits in ‘destination cities’ continues in 2023 with a race which will incorporate part of the famous ‘Strip’. In a break from the norm, the race will start on a Saturday night (Sunday morning UK time) and is likely to be held over Thanksgiving weekend in November towards the end of the season.
It will take the number of Grand Prix in the United States to three, joining Austin and Miami, with the latter, another street track, joining the calendar earlier this year.
READ MORE: London Grand Prix plan shows potential route including Buckingham Palace chicane
Tickets for the Las Vegas race are set to be hard to come by as F1 interest in the US continues to boom. Many tickets will be sold as part of hotel packages, and for eye-popping sums.
That’s according to US journalist of the Adam Stern of the respected Sports Business Journal. He has reported that the owner of one of Las Vegas’s biggest hotels, the MGM, is planning to buy $20-25million worth of F1 tickets and package them with hotel stays. Stern added that MGM CEO Bill Hornbuckle said rooms may cost three times their usual rate, up to an eye-watching $100,000.
Do you think three races in America is too many? Have your say in the comments section below.
The news was met with criticism from many US-based F1 fans, who believe the sport is more interested in looking after millionaires and celebrities rather than traditional race fans.
“And once again racing is turned from spectators going to enjoy the race to another flex or event for celebrities and rich, not for fans of the actual sport,” tweeted one, while another pointed out: “For the price of one Las Vegas weekend, you could take a family of 4 to go see the race in Budapest, France and Italy… and still have $50k left over.”
A third said: “Just imagine how many people would show up to F1 races if tickets were affordable” and a fourth commented: “This is why I don't like the idea of having too many races in America. They just turn it into money making scheme. And celebrity hangouts where they ignore the reporter asking for an interview. Keep it max 3 races in America. Texas, Miami and Mexico. Go to other countries.”
One F1 fan bemoaned: “Was hoping to take my boys to their first F1 race. Looks like they’ll have to choose between a crowded weekend of poor sight lines or college.”
Another said: "Taking a Vegas skyline helicopter tour that night will be cheaper than sitting in the most uncomfortable seat available. Just ask the pilot to circle over the track a few times."
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