2010 United States Grand Prix rumoured

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

American crowds could see F1 in 2010 - but probably not at Indianapolis
American crowds could see F1 in 2010 - but probably not at Indianapolis

F1 team bosses have put more pressure on Bernie Ecclestone to put the United States Grand Prix back on the calendar in 2010.

However the venue for the race may not be the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where the race was last held from 2000-2007.

The teams have made it clear they want a USA Grand Prix on the calendar. Nick Fry, who’s spoken in favour of the US Grand Prix before, told Autosport.com:

This is supposed to be a world championship and a large part of it is made up of North America, so we should be going back there.

The North American market is absolutely vital to us, and for all the luxury car makers especially it is key. It is a market Honda is successful in, with Honda and Acura, and we would like to get back there as soon as possible.

But Mario Theissen explained why a return to Indianapolis may be avoided:

If I look at where we sell our cars it is certainly on the east coast and the west coast, so from that perspective [Indianapols] is not the ideal venue.

If not Indianapolis, then where?

Indianapolis has been modified since it held its final United States Grand Prix last year and if it was used would likely be run in the opposite direction without using the oval turn.

America has dozens of racing tracks and some of them, like Elkhart Lake and Laguna Seca, would be stunning places to watch F1 cars race. But they are likely a long way away from F1’s expectations of safety standards and paddock facilities.

A street track might be a better option. America has many street circuits and could take advantage of the new fashion for street racing in F1. F1’s experience of racing on American street has been variously good (Long Beach), bad (Pheonix) and ugly (Las Vegas).

But it’s been said time and again on this blog that F1 must have an American round. The small but passionate F1 following in America too often gets overlooked by those who think motor racing in the USA begins and ends with NASCAR. A United States Grand Prix in 2010 would be two years too late but still very welcome. Still, let’s not get too excited – we’ve heard these rumours before.

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47 comments on “2010 United States Grand Prix rumoured”

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  1. @gman
    facilities in Istanbul are far from great from a viewers perspective and it is a hell of a job to get to the circuit. I think future US gp organizers should have the new circuit-if they build it- somewhere closer to the city centers.
    I would like to see the race in Road America, with some upgraded pits it will be great.

  2. The only best circuit for f1 in the states is laguna seca or maybe infineon raceway if they get the paddoks setup for it. What we really need is a F1 built track on the west coast asap.

  3. Gman – “Meadowlands Sports Complex”
    Now a fancy new F1 track there would certainly be impressive. You have all the transportation links in and only a stones throw from Manhattan.
    I guess with the cost of building it, you’d need a Nascar + F1 event each year to make it work. But then you’d think they could charge all those stockbrokers plenty of money for some weekend fun?

  4. Matt, a night race in Las Vegas would be absolutely amazing!!

    they couldn’t have it there in the day though, becase the last F1 race in Las Vegas resulted in poor attendance and racers being extremely dehydrated from the heat (desert heat is much harsher then say humid heat). Why not Los Angeles?

  5. Areez- While a night race with the casinos all lit up may make for a great spectacle, it would never fly as long as Bernie is in charge. As Chalky points out in post 7, Bernie strives to make sure GP start times line up as best they can for the European viewing audiences- therefore allowing his companies to charge the max rates for advertising. A night race in Vegas- even if started around 8 PM local time- would be in the wee early morning in Europe, and that would never fly with Mr. E.

    Chalky- Indeed, a track at the Meadowlands would be more than fantastic- all the perks and pomp of NYC just across the river, and within driving range for tens of millions of Americans. If the teams are looking for an ideal spot from a marketing standpoint, they won’t get a better one than New York. Finally, from a personal standpoint, it would be less than two hours from my home and would be just next to the brand-new stadium for my beloved New York Giants of the NFL- I coulden’t ask for anything better!!

  6. In browsing around for a bit more news on this topic, I’ve discovered another fantastic venue….New Jersey Motorsports Park, brand-new facility located in Southern New Jersey. If it’s up to F1-spec, it could be the PERFECT venue for the USGP!! It’s very close to Atlantic City, so Bernie and everyone can have all the fun of Vegas, and the teams can still go racing at a proper circuit. And it’s right here on the East Coast, very close to Philidelphia and just a few hours from New York.

    Take a look at the link and see what you all think-has anyone on this site been there before or know if it would mee F1 sregulations?


    1. Atlantic City Casinos are know to be huge dives, attracting impoverished gamblers on regional buses…not high stakes camblers on private planes.

  7. I used to live in Indianapolis and went to every race. Don’t knock Indy – there is nowhere in the world that compares to it. It’s just unfortunate that they didn’t come up with a better road course.

    Unfortunately, track owner Tony George said in an interview with the Indianapolis newspaper that talks had broken off.

    Long Beach may not be too big of a stretch. I think that the race there is owned by George’s arch-enemy Kalkhoven, who’s Champ Car was driven into bankruptcy by the IRL. It is quite possible that Kalkhoven would love to stick it to George by snatching the USGP.

  8. Gman:

    That Thunderbolt raceway circuit layout reminds me somewhat of Brands Hatch. A tight wiggly bit out on a limb, attached to a fast, square-shaped section.

    Looks a if it’s not quite built yet though.

  9. Why not return to the glorious 50’s (when the Indy 500 was included in the Championship points) and include a US oval in with the mix of road courses? As a pure speed event, it would be fascinating to see what would happen. Maybe even NASCAR-ites would take a peek.

  10. Hmm…a United States Grand Prix…at the Meadowlands? Am I the only living person that remembers the Indy Car race by that name in the ’80s, on a street course within the Meadowlands complex? It seems even here in North Jersey no one remembers it but me, and it was reasonably well attended so that’s baffling. Major renovations there (new Giants Stadium going up and the old one still standing until spring 2010 at least, and construction of the Xanadu shopping complex) would make a street circuit difficult to lay out and a permanent one all but impossible, but I’d sure enjoy a 10-minute trip to an F1 race, so it sounds nice to me. Don’t hold your breath for NASCAR to come to town under such circumstances either…once International Speedway Corp (NASCAR’s even eviler track-owning twin, which is mainly in the business of running race tracks out of business) was rebuffed in an attempt to construct an oval in Staten Island, I think NASCAR got the hint that cracking this market would be harder than they’d anticipated and decided to give up.

    By the way, the CART “USGP Meadowlands” does have a Bernie connection…Bernie had hoped to hold an F1 race at Flushing Meadows in Queens, also on a street circuit, but when that proved impractical, the Meadowlands option surfaced…ultimately, though, Bernie lost interest and it was only ever run as a CART Indy car race.

  11. It would be nice to put it at Sebring

    1. Especially if they used the original 6+ mile track.

    2nd April 2009, 23:57

    As an expat F1 aficionado living across the pond in USA, i’d love to see F1 return. To date its been a shambles. Street circuits are so so boring & just don’t suit F! ( monaco being the exception for reasons other than the racing ) . I live in Vegas & went to the Indy thing last year. No real vantage points for viewing. Streets not suited for any kind of racing & generally a really dull event ( made you wished you’d stayed at home with your Playstation ) A long term commitment could maybe generate the huge income to bring an existing track up to speed, to compare with the recent ones purpose built abroad. Really hope somebody gets it together.

  13. I’d like to know if some channel in Orlando will show the Malasya GP.

  14. Bryce Priggemeier
    3rd June 2009, 15:35

    A US Grand Prix at Thunderbolt would be absolutely superb. The facility is done (to my knowledge) and provides not only the top notch amenities that F1 types seem to gravitate towards but also accomodations for the tens of thousands of fans that would flock to a race such as the USGP. Monte Carlo it is not, but definitely worth a look-see from Bernie!

  15. I have been wanting to see the USGP for years. The wife and I were planning on going and then FIA jacked it. I do hope that the FIA and crew do bring it back. I know that we dont have many tracks that are as known world wide. As Spa, Monza, or Monico but it doesn’t mean we could have a race here. I would like to see Laguna Saca or the Glenn.

  16. Watkins Glen is where it belongs.. I know the track would need some work for F1 standards, and it’s in a very small country town, but it was the original location of the US gran prix, and it’s an amazing track.

    1. Actually, I think the first USGP was in Sebring. But I agree that Watkins Glen is the perfect place.

  17. It is a travesty that Formula One has as many races in Spain (Valencia and Catalunya) as North America, South America, Central America, Africa and Oceania combined (Albert Park and Interlagos). Formula One is already a specialist sport – the way to making it more globally great is not by leaving three inhabited continents (Africa, N. America and Central America without a grand prix). I live in Britain, but if I lived in one of the aforementioned continents, I could easily come to the conclusion that Formula One doesn’t care about us so we won’t care about it.

    1. In order to make it more appealing to US and Canadian crowds F1 needs to stop screwing up the race tracks with excessive safety regulations and allow for more passing. Watching parade by grandstands without anyone passing each other is boring.

      I prefer sports car and open wheel racing myself, but FIA needs to keep in mind that NASCAR races in the US have cars within inches of each other running flat out at 175-190 MPH. Leads can change twice on a single lap. They crash at that speed and the drivers walk away.

      Put more safety contols into the cars and take them out of the tracks so the drivers can race again and F1 will be popular here. Otherwise, we’ll continue to show more interest in the Rose Bowl parade, which is just like watching F1 in slow motion.

  18. well i think we should have to races in the u.s. it should be east and west. I think long beach is great because its an american version of monaco. It can maybe get some upgrades to make the track overall better because its short compared to monaco. finally i think the east grand prix should be road america because it has changes in eleveation which makis it fun. Please bring usgp back to Long Beach it already attracts a lot of fans!

  19. I’m coming to the party really late, but that’s when interesting things happen, no? 2 GPs for the states, no doubt. Have to start with one, though- Vegas could definitely put a decent street/racetrack course together. Cheap flights to there from the rest of the country, and no lodging problems. I’m suprised that no other Yank has mentioned VIR- although they have no lodging to speak of, the track is essentially Spa in the central Virginia hills, absolutely spectacular,so you have DC an hour’s helicopter flight away. My last time there, I watched some really rich guy at a vintage race put his ex-M. Schumacher Benetton into the guardrail at turn 6. Dang! Call Flavio.

    1. VIR is a nice track. I am in Maryland about 2-3 hrs away from VIR. I would make the drive for that.

      Now that rich guy I would have to say thats a case of too many dollars and not enough cents. :)


  20. It was just announced a few days ago. Baltimore (Maryland) is going to host an IRL race, in August 2011. Now I am not much of an IRL fan but I would hope that the FIA will take notice and maybe consider bringing the US GP back and maybe in the Baltimore. I would say this is wishful thinking but hey one can hope.


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