The possibility of the globetrotting Formula One auto racing series returning to Las Vegas is back in the news after F1 CEO Chase Carey said the city remains a potential venue for a second U.S. race.
Speaking on a Liberty Media earnings conference call — Liberty, which also owns baseball’s Atlanta Braves, purchased F1 for $4.6 billion in 2017 — Carey said adding a second race to partner one in Austin, Texas, is a priority.
“Probably the first step would be adding that race in a city like Miami or Las Vegas,” said Carey, who indicated he would be meeting with representatives in both cities next week. Officials at the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and Las Vegas Events said they were not aware of any formal negotiations.
Formula One is not nearly as popular in the U.S. as it is around the world, but appeals to a sponsor and fan base with lots of discretionary dollars to spend — the kind of clients that Las Vegas hotel-casinos find desirable. Even more impressive are global TV ratings that saw F1 average 23.3 million viewers over 21 races in 2018 compared with 15.5 million for NFL regular-season games.
“There’s a lot more fans here than people believe,” Carey said about bringing a race to an American destination city such as Miami or Las Vegas, where Caesars Palace hosted two Grand Prix races during the 1980s. “We’re excited about those opportunities.”