Steiner explanation of split car policy
Follow all the build-up, analysis and latest news ahead of Formula One’s first Grand Prix in Las Vegas, Nevada since 1982
Patrick Iversen, Alex Davies and more
November 15, 2023 at 9:18 PM EST
F1 Las Vegas GP — times, track info and how to watchTimings: Opening ceremony 7:30pm PT Wednesday/10:30pm ET Wednesday/3:30am GMT Thursday morning in the UK; Qualifying: 12am (midnight) PT Saturday/3am ET/8am GMT; Race: 10pm PT Saturday/1am ET Sunday and 6am GMT Sunday.Track: Las Vegas Strip Circuit, 50 laps around the 6.201 km/3.853 mile course.Why is the race at night?How to watch: Tune in via Sky Sports F1 in the UK or ESPN in the US, with Channel 4 offering a highlights package in the UK.Subscribe to The Athletic using our latest offer here.Steiner explanation of split car policy
(Photo: Getty Images)
“The main drive behind this was Nico feels that for him the old spec suits him better, and Kevin is the opposite,” explained Haas F1 boss Günther Steiner.
“We’ve opted to give them what they want, we have two races to go and nothing to lose, so we’ve tried to do what we can.
“We could discuss gathering data, but we’ve got enough data, it’s a decision based on what each driver likes more than anything else. It puts them in a comfortable position so that they’re as happy as they can be with the car they get.”
Haas to run split car specifications in Las Vegas
Since debuting its last major upgrade package of the year in Austin, Haas hasn’t made the kind of step forward it would have hoped. The team has slipped to last in the constructors’ championship, and is four points adrift from Alfa Romeo in P9.
The primary intention of the upgrade was always to offer the team a direction on its car design for 2024 and beyond, but both Nico Hülkenberg and Kevin Magnussen have experienced different feelings.
Hülkenberg said in Mexico he thought the old car would have given him a better chance of clinging on for points after running eighth in the opening stages.
For this reason, Haas will now run both specifications of car in Las Vegas. Hülkenberg will revert to the un-upgraded version, while Magnussen will continue with the new version.
For fans who bought three-day passes like myself, one piece of valuable knowledge I can pass along is that you need to ensure you have a separate ticket for each day.
When I first received my tickets from the resale company I used, only one set of passes came, marked for Thursday.
I assumed that those passes would work for the entire three days, but after some digging, I learned this was not the case. After prodding the reseller, I then received separate passes for Friday and Saturday.
Lights out and… together we go
I’ll get straight on the phone to my girlfriend.
Will report back in half an hour to let you know how it goes.
F1’s Sphere takeover
(Photo: Getty Images)
From the day F1 announced the Las Vegas Grand Prix, the visuals of cars streaking down The Strip at night have captured the imagination.
But the upcoming Formula One circuit will also pass through another element that will catch viewers’ attention worldwide: The new Sphere, a 20,000-capacity entertainment venue that is the largest spherical structure in the world and cost $2.3 billion to build.
The Sphere will be impossible to miss for F1 fans. It already is for any Las Vegas visitor who has been to the city since the Sphere’s “exosphere” – its external LED screen – began lighting up in July.
Next week, when F1 comes to town, the Sphere will sit inside the track near Turns 5, 6 and 7. That zone will be the main area for concerts and other entertainment during the weekend. (It’s also where The Athletic’s Michael Dominski will report on the race.)
F1’s Sphere takeover: From traffic snarl to Las Vegas GP’s ‘incredible backdrop’
An early view of the track
IndyCar driver Conor Daly just shared this view of the paddock building.
Ticket prices keep dropping
According to TicketSmarter, the average price for a 3-day pass has dropped from $3,600 to $2,316. Tickets for just the grand prix have dropped from $3,365 to an average of $1,267.
The least expensive tickets for Saturday’s race? $560 for the East Harmon Zone around the start/finish line.
Formula One descends on Las Vegas
Welcome back to Prime Tire, where we’re wondering whether, when nobody’s looking, the Sphere will do this during the Las Vegas Grand Prix.
Someone needs to keep a hand on that wheel, is all I’m saying. Anyway, we’re nearly upon the Las Vegas Grand Prix. I’m Patrick, and Madeline Coleman will be along shortly. Let’s hop to it.
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Formula One descends on Las Vegas; will McLaren threaten Red Bull in 2024?
McLaren reveals its Vegas livery
It’s a partnership with Jack Daniels.
Do they actually race on the Strip?
Call it gimmicky, call it whatever you want, but organizers wanted to literally incorporate the famous stretch of road into the circuit, and they have.
A 1.4mile section is part of the track, and drivers will pass famous spots like Caesars Palace, the Bellagio and Planet Hollywood before racing towards the MSG Sphere.
They won’t have too much time to check out the sights though, given they’ll be driving at more than 200mph.
American Lia Block signs with Williams Racing
Williams announced this morning that Lia Block will join the Williams Racing Driver Academy and represent the team on F1 Academy’s 2024 grid.
The 17-year-old from Park City, Utah, became the youngest American Rally Association champion ever in 2023 by finishing atop the Open Two-Wheel Drive class. Block will drive for ART Grand Prix in F1 Academy in 2024, her first full season in open-wheel racing.
Block is the daughter of American Ken Block, a prolific rally racer and action sports athlete. Ken Block passed away in a snowmobile accident in January.
Las Vegas mailbag: What do you want to know?
After eight months, 22 races, and a triple-header that took us from Austin to Mexico City to São Paulo, we have just about arrived: The inaugural Las Vegas Grand Prix kicks off this weekend.
We’ve already considered the impact of this new race from a few angles, including why it’s starting at 10 p.m. PT, how drivers (and tires) will cope with low temperatures, and how it’s likely to compare to Austin’s United States Grand Prix.
But surely you’ve got questions we have not yet addressed, and that’s why we’ll be running a Vegas-themed mailbag ahead of the action. Whatever you want to know, ask us here.
Las Vegas Grand Prix mailbag: What do you want to know about F1’s newest race?
‘Shoey, shoey, shoey, shoey…’Las Vegas GP hotels go all-in on F1
Look, the upcoming Las Vegas Grand Prix this weekend isn’t for everyone. The cheapest remaining tickets start at $1,500, and although hotel prices have fallen as the race gets closer, it’s still a pricey proposition.
And that’s for those who want to do it on the cheap, without buying one of the gobsmackingly cool-but-expensive hospitality experiences.
But what are some of the things you can do in Las Vegas during race week without a ticket or pass of some kind? We sifted through a variety of race week activations and events to find the most affordable yet fun racing things you can do in Vegas if you’re in town for F1.
Here are our favorites, ranked. (Oh, by the way: This is a living post. Come back periodically to see where new events rank as we stumble across them and add them to the list.)
Las Vegas GP hotels go all-in on F1, from Bottas haircuts to ‘Shoey Bars’
How much is it all worth then?
(Photo: Getty Images)
Forecasts estimate the race will bring circa $1.2m (£980,000) to the Las Vegas area.
Lucrative, and then some.
Three-day standing-only tickets cost $500/£409, and the cheapest grandstand seats on Race Day are from £1,213/£992. Four-day tickets on the start/finish line are from $2,452.50/£2,007.51. There is another option, if that all doesn’t tickle your fancy.
The ‘Emperor Package’. Just $5million. Cost of living crisis? What cost of living crisis?
F1’s coldest race ever?
Formula One has invested over half a billion dollars in the Las Vegas Grand Prix, its newest, shiniest race it hopes will be a calendar highlight for decades.
Yet around the glitz and glamor of holding an event in one of the world’s most vibrant entertainment cities, there is still a race to run that holds the same value as any other: 25 points and a trophy for the winner.
The drivers will go through their usual preparations. They’ll complete laps in the simulator to learn the new circuit incorporating the Vegas landmarks. They’ll anticipate the car setup requirements for the street track. They’ll even adjust their sleep schedule for the 10 p.m. PT start time.
But the late lights-out time is also set to impact one of F1’s biggest variables, and thus the nature of the race: the performance of the tires.
F1’s coldest race ever? Las Vegas GP will challenge drivers, teams and tires
So what about this opening ceremony?
(Photo: Getty Images)
You think you’ve seen it all? Wait until you see this opening ceremony.
All 20 drivers will be in attendance, plus loads of iconic names from the music world, including John Legend, Journey, Keith Urban, Steve Aoki, Swedish House Mafia, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Tiesto, will.i.am, and others.
The Blue Man Group and Cirque du Soleil will also perform, in front of an expected crowd of around 30,000, with a display of 1,000 lights, 100 lasers and fireworks set to illuminate the Nevada skies.
F1 Brazil GP driver rankings
Interlagos has a reputation for delivering drama and surprises when Formula One makes its annual visit to Brazil. The past weekend was no exception.
Through challenging conditions and a race of attrition, it was easy to slip up at Interlagos. Yes, Max Verstappen won again — that’s 17 for the year if you’re losing count — but a number of drivers who have gone quiet in recent months issued reminders of their class.
The apocalyptic skies at the end of qualifying made it a challenge just to stay on-track as the wind and rain rolled in, while tire wear and degradation proved a challenge for everyone in both the sprint and the grand prix.
Here’s our top 10 for the Brazil’s Sāo Paulo Grand Prix.
F1 Brazil GP driver rankings: Alonso delivers one of 2023’s best drives
F1 Brazil GP takeaways
The São Paulo Grand Prix held promise after an action-packed sprint. But after hectic formation and opening laps that knocked out three drivers and knocked the two Australians a lap down, the race turned rather quiet.
The battles for second, fourth and seventh in the constructor standings tightened with two grands prix to go. Formula One is headed into a well-deserved non-race week before flying over to the U.S. for the Las Vegas Grand Prix.
But before we set our sights on the Strip, here are our takeaways from the São Paulo Grand Prix.
F1 Brazil GP takeaways: Pérez advances, Ferrari and Mercedes miss out