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4 things fueling Las Vegas Grand Prix controversy

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Las vegas grand priz controversy
Las Vegas Grand Prix. Photo/Inside Hook
  • Las Vegas Grand Prix controversy is one of the major highlights of the F1 2023 season
  • Some racing fans are still grappling with what went wrong
  • It was among the most chaotic race this season

Las Vegas Grand Prix controversy is one of the major highlights of the F1 2023 season.

Some racing fans are still grappling with what went wrong at Sunday’s much-anticipated Grand Prix that put Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen in the spotlight once more.

To say that it was among the most chaotic races this season would be an understatement. What many people expected to be a race to remember in Sin City turned out to be an eyesore, not just for fans but for Formula One teams.

4 Things Behind Las Vegas Grand Prix Controversy

Here are four things that marred the Formula One race in a city millions of people only dream of stepping in.

High Ticket Cost

las vegas grand prix

Las Vegas Grand Prix. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

The tickets were highly priced which locked some F1 fans out of the event. Matt was told Planet F1 that he was willing to attend the event but his financial situation was accommodating. A friend who works for Mercedes dealership in Las Vegas had invited him and he was hesitant at first but the sight of the fast-moving race cars thrilled him.

“If I was in a better financial situation, I wouldn’t hesitate to buy tickets for the race next year,” he said. “I don’t know what it was, but I couldn’t take my eyes off the cars. Plus, the overall experience was just so much easier than I thought it would be. I wouldn’t hesitate to come back if I could afford it.”

The exorbitant ticket prices emerged as a significant deterrent for numerous fans anticipating the inaugural Las Vegas Grand Prix, and this issue is likely to persist as a point of discussion in the future.

These elevated costs dissuaded many potential attendees until organizers made substantial price cuts on unsold seats as the race drew near. Lowering the overall cost will enhance accessibility for fans, and incorporating various experiences and price options will contribute to sustaining the event’s prestige in 2024.

Revise the Schedule

Despite Las Vegas’s reputation for parties that extend into the early hours, several Formula 1 enthusiasts I conversed with during the city’s Grand Prix felt fatigued due to the late commencement of qualifying and the race. Race spectators were under pressure to fit in as much as possible over the typically long race weekends, and they felt it.

It would make more sense for both the spectators at the track and the American viewers at home for the organizers to think about starting the sessions a little earlier in order to further elevate the stature of the Las Vegas Grand Prix.

Improve Logistics

Free food, water, and soda were provided to grandstand ticket holders, but there were no special queues for those hoping to score some more free water. Instead, they had to wait in line behind many people buying beer or cocktails.

The fast stop and start turned into a more than half an hour before the race and qualifying. All in all, other race day logistics at the Las Vegas Grand Prix left a positive impression. The track was strategically divided into various “zones,” each equipped with its own entrances and designated areas for rideshare drop-offs and pick-ups.

las vegas grand prix

Las Vegas Grand Prix. Photo/F1

This thoughtful organization effectively mitigated congestion at any specific point on the track, providing convenience for viewers who preferred not to walk back to their hotel. There was no traffic surge in the city as one would expect with such a big race event in the city.

Lack of Engagement from the Neighbourhood

F1’s lack of involvement with the local community remains one of the race’s lingering problems. The apathy by Las Vegas residents doesn’t augur well for the organizers. Some felt that it would unnecessarily disrupt the smooth flow of things in the American party city.

This sentiment echoed through the voices of casino workers, restaurant servers, and bartenders. With no information provided by F1, there was a prevailing expectation of the worst.

To ensure a more successful event in 2024, Formula 1 should focus on better integration with the local community. By taking the time to inform Las Vegas residents about the event, potential conflicts and uncertainties could be minimized, fostering a more positive relationship between the sport and the city.

Teresa is a journalist with years of experience in creating web content. She is a wanderlust at heart, but an outgoing sports writer with focus on tennis, athletics, football, motorsports and NBA.

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