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New F1 CEO might want to tackle way forward for U.S. Grand Prix in Austin as racetrack deal set to run out after 2021 season

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Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport driver Lewis Hamilton (44) of Great Britain celebrates clinching the 2019 FIA Formula 1 World Championship following the F1 – U.S. Grand Prix race at Circuit of The Americas on November 3, 2019 in Austin, Texas.

Ken Murray | Icon Sportswire | Getty Images

Formula One has the fan base, its income has recovered following losses, and it has a racing star in Lewis Hamilton that may develop its minority shoppers. 

The mission now could be to additional broaden within the U.S., and the Liberty Media-owned property can have a brand new voice to assist it obtain this mission.

On Friday, F1 introduced it should transfer CEO Chase Carey “to the role of non-executive Chairman,” changing him with Stefano Domenicali, the previous Ferrari crew principal.

It was a transfer accredited by officers all through F1.

Hamilton known as Domenicali’s rent “amazing.” “I don’t think they could have really chosen someone better, to be honest, to replace some big shoes with Chase, who’s done an amazing job, and who’s always had such a great approach,” Hamilton is quoted as saying on Formula1.com.

Carey, who had been CEO of F1 since 2017, helped negotiate a brand new Concorde Agreement with racing groups, together with a new $175 million cap that limits the quantity groups can spend per calendar 12 months.

Due to Covid-19, the brand new cap was decreased to $145 million for the 2021 season. The new settlement is ready to run out in 2025. Carey additionally helped finalize a brand new three-year media rights cope with ESPN in November 2019.

Liberty Media President and CEO, Greg Maffei, joined CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Thursday however didn’t say something in regards to the CEO change at F1.

In a press release, Maffei praised Carey for “a phenomenal job,” crediting him for assembling “a first-class commercial and sporting organization that has a long list of achievements, including broadening the appeal of the sport, growing its digital presence, establishing new technical regulations, securing a cost cap for the first time and reaching a new more equitable Concorde agreement with the teams.”

Carey’s exit is not seen as a shock to these in racing circles, although.

Although F1 made roughly $2 billion in 2019 after struggling losses in earlier seasons, its growth technique within the U.S. and China are unsure after Carey mentioned the territories have been a a part of F1’s plans in 2017.

The Chinese Grand Prix was canceled as a result of Covid-19, however rumors have surfaced that F1 was near a brand new five-year deal to maintain the occasion at Shanghai International Circuit. Still, it is unclear if present relations between the U.S. and China, and that includes the TikTok saga, would influence F1’s future within the nation.

Race winner Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP celebrates in parc ferme through the F1 Grand Prix of Tuscany at Mugello Circuit on September 13, 2020 in Scarperia, Italy.

Dan Istitene | Formula 1 | Getty Images

Future in Austin

And within the U.S., F1’s settlement with Austin’s Circuit of The Americas racetrack, the place the United States Grand Prix is held, expires after the 2021 season, with uncertainty that the events will renew.

Securing the U.S. Grand Prix occasion in Austin could be vital for F1 because the monitor is completely suited to race, and town’s sports activities base, a younger demographic, would help sponsorship visibility.

Austin now features a Major League Soccer membership and the racetrack plans to draw NASCAR, which simply added sports activities icon Michael Jordan as a crew proprietor.

The $300 million monitor receives state funding from Texas underneath the Major Events Reimbursement Program to assist the $25 million working price of internet hosting the F1 occasion and plans for redeveloping the monitor to characteristic a resort and water park.

There are rumors of returning to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with Roger Penske as the brand new proprietor, But the transfer could be dangerous for Liberty after a failed trial from 2000-2007. Also, the Indianapolis 500 and Brickyard 400 are the premier races on the monitor and will overshadow any F1 occasion.

The U.S. Grand Prix didn’t happen within the States from 2008 to 2011 after leaving Indianapolis. It returned in 2012 after Austin constructed its monitor.

F1 additionally desires to host an occasion in Miami outdoors the Hard Rock Stadium however faces resistance from native residents over points similar to noise ranges. F1 revised its occasion plans, however even when a 2021 race happens, town does not seem to need F1 the best way the group desires it.

It all places extra uncertainty round F1’s U.S. growth technique. If Liberty fails to barter a return to Austin, progress for its $4.Four billion racing property might regress within the United States.

“I think it’s right to say F1 wouldn’t exist in the U.S. right now if we hadn’t built a home for it here at COTA,” Epstein mentioned in an interview with ESPN in 2019. “You just have to look at what we’ve done in U.S. and helping to build a fan base here – before ticket sales had been falling and it had been difficult for any circuit to establish itself as the home of F1.

“It was not how it’s right this moment, there have been a whole lot of races on Mickey Mouse road circuits you’ll be able to’t construct historical past on. It was the identical with Indy — even should you ignore the 2005 incident, which was a reasonably large black eye for F1, the circuit was nonetheless the house of the Indy 500, not F1.”



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