FORMULA ONE’S efforts to expand across the US got a boost on Thursday when Miami’s council agreed to enter formal negotiations to host a race as early as next year.
The unanimous vote allows city staff to work out a contract with F1 that could be voted on later this summer. Miami officials have said they hope for a 10-year deal on a race that could be staged in October, toward the end of the annual F1 season.
Formula One has been looking to expand in the US since the US Grand Prix was revived in 2012 in Austin, Texas. Miami would be the fourth race in North America, along with the annual Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal and the Mexican Grand Prix in Mexico City.
A Miami race also would give F1’s US owners, Liberty Media, a coveted showcase event in a US city with international interest for fans of the global series.
F1 officials have been scouting locations since 2017 and the city last week released an early proposal of a course that would take the cars through downtown high-rises, into the Port of Miami and over water on two bridges.
Reigning F1 champion Lewis Hamilton said he was excited about the prospect of racing in Miami, but deemed the proposed course boring.
“When I saw the layout I was like ‘meh’,” he opined.
The irony of high-powered motor racing through the streets of the US city most at risk from rising seas resulting from greenhouse gas-caused climate change appears not to have troubled F1 organisers or the city.
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