Planned Hard Rock Stadium F1 circuit for 2021 Miami Grand Prix

Breakthrough expected in bid for F1’s first Miami Grand Prix

2022 F1 season

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Liberty Media’s long-held dreams of bringing Formula 1 to Miami finally appear close to becoming reality.

Years of wrangling over plans to add a second American round of the world championship look set to reach a conclusion as Miami Gardens mayor Rodney Harris, who previously opposed the scheme, is now supporting it. The Miami Herald reported Harris has given his backing to a joint resolution with the event promoters aimed at addressing residents’ concerns over noise, pollution and other disruption the race may cause.

The promoter’s plans have been repeatedly frustrated by local opposition. It forced the relocation of the event from the streets of downtown Miami, where IndyCar and Formula E previously raced, to a circuit based in the car park of the Hard Rock Stadium.

The venue is home to the Miami Dolphins NFL team which is owned by Stephen Ross, the key mover behind the race. The latest route, revealed in January last year, bypasses North-West 199th street, addressing another concern of the project’s critics.

Planned Hard Rock Stadium F1 circuit for 2021 Miami Grand Prix
Analysis: The less obvious reasons why Miami matters so much to F1
Nonetheless in November a group of resident brought a lawsuit against Miami-Dade County seeking to block the race and accusing the county of racial discrimination.

Among the concessions offered to locals in the joint resolution between Harris and the Hard Rock Stadium are a $5 million economic package, internships for city residents and a science, technology, engineering and mathematics programme. The council will vote on the deal on Wednesday, and the support of Harris means it is likely to win approval.

The race could therefore join the 2022 F1 calendar, three years after the sport originally intended to schedule its first Miami Grand Prix.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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47 comments on “Breakthrough expected in bid for F1’s first Miami Grand Prix”

  1. I’m still skeptical.

    1. Same here. “Breakthrough” announced today, but how long until yet another problem with this venue?

    2. I’ll believe it when tickets go on sale and not before. I doubt it will ever happen. Just like NYC.

  2. It looks like another Sochi, i’m not exactly excited (if ever does happen), but happy to b e proved wrong.

    1. Jonathan Outterbridge
      9th April 2021, 20:13

      Yeah a backwards Sochi but idk how interesting the track will really be. Too much high speed and not technical enough:/

      1. So, unless I’m mistaken, the map makes it look like the pit area is just the right of the stadium, on the other side of the track. That means the drivers are either coming into the pit lane after that tight hairpin, or they’re leaving the pit lane into a tight hairpin.

        Reply moderated
  3. Why is there so much backlash from the local community against this? A bit of noise for one weekend in exchange of having the hotels and restaurants of the area full for almost a week seems a good deal.

    1. Yeah, ultimately, most people don’t care for Formula 1, especially in America. So having your city clogged with tourists while you’re just trying to get home from work isn’t exactly an enticing prospect.

      Like how, ten years ago, my city decided to allow a 3-day outdoor dance festival to be hosted on the river’s edge diagonally from my house. Certainly, a fun event for those attending, given it sells out within minutes every year. For me though, it means a ton of noise, closed streets, a supermarket overrun by people high on party drugs, alcohol, and weed. And overall just not a pleasant experience. If I had a choice, as much fun as the festival no doubt is, I’d have that permit revoked yesterday if I could.

      1. As though living next to a football stadium isn’t noisy already.

      2. I’ve no doubt it might be pretty frustrating for that one weekend, but your perspective supposes that those objecting never themselves go and attend events elsewhere that might disrupt other localities for a brief period. We’ve all got to share this world and living in a destination city like Miami means there’s going to be things going on around you. There are quieter places around for those that don’t want that.

      3. Having travelled from Melbourne to Miami 10 years ago to experience this its amazing

    2. It won’t be one weekend. The cost of building the track means there would have to be many races per year. Local residents don’t want that. I doubt this will happen. Remember the New Jersey / NYC race?

      The shame is that the US has some great circuits. Why not use them?

      1. @rsp123 Apart from FE and the Historic GP events in Monaco, the street tracks in F1 don’t have any other races besides F1. The build-up and dismantling process on both sides of the F1 weekend are worthy of mention.
        Otherwise, I agree with you. Indianapolis is the only FIA Grade 1 track in the US after COTA.

      2. Because they are mostly far from big cities and airports with limited seating capacity, they aren’t mega-wide, or they are ovals. These don’t fit F1’s owners’ desire for urban ultra-entertainment events.

        But how much of a typical race attendance are F1 fans that travel from outside the area? I know that for COTA a significant portion of the attendance are locals just checking out the big event in their area and going to the concerts.

        1. Jonathan Outterbridge
          9th April 2021, 20:16

          I think that’s why they want a city circuit. It’s 3 days and won’t be year round to annoy the locals with noise and will bring in millions in revenue. So many other countries do it but the track in Texas is just a road in the middle of nowhere compared to other circuits…

    3. NIMBY + all the retirees not caring about the financial impact these events have.

      “My life will be inconvenienced for a few weeks..” I live in central FL and see/hear this crap all the time.

      Reply moderated
    4. Well, I guess that as S mentions, living close to a football stadium is already noisy @paeschli, @aiii. Remember these stadiums also almost always organise concerts as well. And as @rsp123 mentions, buildup means that the area will be closed off even more often than it already is.

      Many cities already have so many tourists, that the inhabitants feel the place is not for them anymore. You have bars, restaurants, gift shops, Madame Tusseauds, sex museums, nuttella-wafer stands and whatnot, but cannot find a decent shop to buy groceries or even luxury items anymore.

    5. @paeschli “A bit of noise for one weekend in exchange of having the hotels and restaurants of the area full for almost a week seems a good deal.”

      Have you been to Miami? There’s a never ending stream of large events, EDM festivals, etc. It’s already a circus, and the people I know who live there don’t want anymore clowns.

    6. @paeschli the argument that “the hotels and restaurants of the area will be full for almost a week” doesn’t really work all that well though.

      The surrounding area is almost entirely comprised of residential properties – their local area isn’t really deriving much, if any, benefit from the event as visitors are going to mostly stay elsewhere and spend their money elsewhere, but they are left with the negative impacts of the event taking place.

  4. Miami Gardens mayor Rodney Harris, who previously opposed the scheme, is now supporting it

    I presume he is also receiving an “economic package” too

    1. America isn’t a country, it’s a business.

  5. If they want to hold another race in the US fine, But at least come up with a circuit that is at least on-par with COTA in terms of actually been a generally good circuit.

    This one just gives me the same vibes as the similar car-park street circuits we already have to suffer with on top of the mistakes from the 80’s of trying to get F1 over in the US via poor, disliked & quickly forgotten street & car-park circuits. Although at least those old street circuits offered some challenge in terms of been very narrow, Very bumpy with various different types of track surfaces to contend with which helped create a bit of drama.

    It’s not just about the racing either. The spectacle of watching the cars drive around many of these style of modern street/car-park circuits is also simply not there which just makes dull races feel even worse.

    1. well said. Liberty-forget this parking lot BS & do it properly. The fans dont want this

  6. Not the best circuit but I’m definitely here for it. Cota is pretty far from me but I can take the bus to miami!

  7. I think having more races in North America would be a good thing purely from a geographic size perspective, but I don’t think Miami is the right answer at all. Yes, it has all sorts of glamour and Lewis enjoys hanging out there very much but if F1 is truly trying to add to it’s fan base and gain long term fans, having another Sochi is not going to do it. It may be successful for the first couple of years because of the novelty but pretty soon people will bore of it if the racing is not good. And racing in a car park around a football stadium on a completely flat piece of land does not sound like particularly exciting racing to me.

    I think the internships for locals as well as the STEM programme are very good additions though and should be required for all venues regardless of if Miami happens or not.

  8. FANTASTIC! Another Tilkedrome that we can’t tell apart from Abu Dhabi/Valencia/Korea/India/Vietnam.

    I really hope they have a stadium section!

    It’s just what F1 needs!!!!!!

    1. Wonder where pit lane is? Are there really going to be yachts parked inside the track? Looking on Google Maps this is definitely a densely packed residential area. I’m having a hard time picturing how they can carve it out

      Reply moderated
  9. I’m finding it very hard to be optimistic about this venue. Another Caesars Palace race. Please add more races at proper race tracks instead of building facilities that will only be used once per year and need to be assembled and disassembled for the event. This is not sustainable. If F1 wants to race on the east coast go back to Indianapolis. Road America. Sonoma Raceway. Bring Watkins Glen up to grade 1 standards.

    1. @ryanoceros Presently, only Indianapolis (besides COTA) has the necessary Grade 1, but the others can get upgraded if everyone wants.

      1. Yeah still easier than building a new temporary race circuit in a stadium car park and the racing will undoubtedly be better.

      2. There is a little known track in Utah that was built a few years ago at or near F1 grade. It is in the middle of nowhere, not far from the salt lakes maybe an hour from SLC. Unfortunately, unlike Florida, corruption in Utah is probably not F1 grade.
        There is a few tracks like this around the country that could be upgraded for a minimum $, but Liberty is stuck on Miami.
        They will throw around enough “economic packages” to enough people and get the GP but just like Indy, Imsa, FE before them, it will be on for one year and they will not come back unless…… they bring a fresh batch of “economic package”. :)
        You’r talkin’ Miami here!

  10. Colonel_Blimp
    9th April 2021, 16:56

    Really don’t get the love for COTA, awful layout for me, there’s bits I would cut out.

    The trouble with street tracks is they’ll be stop/start with no elevation changes.

    1. @Colonel_Blimp Which bits? I don’t dislike any one particular section of track, not to mention the track as a whole.

    2. I’ve enjoyed every COTA race, personally. The elevation change going into turn one is spectacular, and the esses are second best to Silverstone. The aerial views of the track are also unlike any other.
      Regarding a second race, I think Miami should be canned for a classic like Road America or Sonoma.

      Reply moderated
      1. Sonoma might be too short, but Road America? yes! It would need a lots of work. If you want elevation changes in a Spa like settings I suggest Road Atlanta. Yes! We have so many great tracks in this country, why Miami ? Why? By the way I live thirteen miles from the proposed site.

  11. Shame they can’t just get someone to throw some money at Laguna Seca and use that. Then they’d have a race on the West Coast.

    And it’s a great little circuit.

    Reply moderated
  12. For me the bumpiness of the track ruined the last race but nearly all the previous races have been excellent! Track supposedly fixed for 2021

  13. F1 does not have a great record of hosting American carpark circuits. Dallas and Las Vegas come to mind.

  14. I still don’t quite get Miami, it’s just full of old people, kind of the old target audience. They should do Silicon Valley or Seattle, get the eyes of the mega-rich tech-heads.

    1. mega rich tech heads in seattle or silicon valley would be whinging about CO2 and how much money could be given to the voters, er…needy. Seattle is a mess now anyway. lot of work to make things not look crappy.

      Reply moderated
  15. Reading the comments here, it’s fairly obvious that most are a bit out of touch with what they believe “Miami” to be at this point. First and foremost the location of the football stadium is nowhere near the city nor the water. It’s actually in a different municipality altogether. Unusually it is not surrounded by restaurants and hotels or any other nightlife activities. The surrounding neighborhoods are low income and not glamorous at all. Hence the backlash as the locals do not stand to gain anything from an economic standpoint. The original proposed venue near the water in the actual city would’ve been ideal. Secondly those that think Miami is disproportionately elderly, are way off base. At this point it’s one of the youngest cities in the United States with extreme and enormous condensed wealth. Exponentially more wealthy than Monaco at this point. Due to the current tax codes in the United States most wealthy individuals have moved to South Florida in general and are escaping places like Silicon Valley and New York City. Lastly, there is a large Formula One fan base in Miami due to the international nature of the population. Lots of former drivers live here and quite a few current drivers maintain second homes here.

  16. F1 are kidding themselves if they honestly believe the US/World will be CoVid free enough to run a GP in ’22.

    1. Doing about 300x better than Europe.

      Reply moderated
  17. What a garbage car park track. Bring the track through a building. Now that would be awesome. I’m not asking to put turns in it or anything but have a large enough whole for tiny race cars to shoot through it. Or go inside the stadium for three or four turns and then go back out onto the parking lot. A child can come up with something more interesting that that heap of trash.

  18. bring back sebring

    1. Tear up some floors! :)

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