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‘GP of America’ to New Jersey in 2013 with a 10 year deal

A new Formula 1 circuit was announced today by state and local officials in a 10 year deal to feature a ‘Monaco like street circuit’ around the Port Imperial area of Weehawken, New Jersey.


150 feet of elevation change, 3.2 miles


Grand Prix of America at Port Imperial: Master Layout 1:2500

The race has been announced for June 2013, with a date most likely within a week of the Canadian Grand Prix, and one with a view like no other race: Manhattan’s skyline.

Billed as a ‘truly green race’, organizers have planned for public transport to be utilized extensively around the circuit, which will accommodate 100,000 spectators around the 3.2 mile clockwise track.  The project is being put together with private funds and economic impact in the area is expected at a rate of about $100M per year, with both West New York and New Jersey officials taking part in today’s announcement.

While excitement has been running high around the new circuit in Austin, (which I visited last month), several of the key players around the new project in New Jersey were pleased with how things are taking shape there, and NASCAR promoter Humpy Wheeler took to the stage to lend his blessing to the project, calling it ‘. . . the best thought out project I have even seen since I’ve been involved in the racing business’.

Formula 1 United States™  Chairman Tavo Hellmund also lent his support to the project in this release today:

“I want to extend my congratulations to Leo and his team, as I know how much work they have put into making this happen. When I walked the site a few years ago, the site’s potential was obvious.  I am excited for the East Coast and feel Tuesday’s announcement is yet another acknowledgement of the viability, fan interest, economic benefits and prestige an F1 Grand Prix event brings to a region.

New Jersey and Texas, nearly 2,000 miles apart, offer unique and very different fan experiences destined to not only raise the visibility of the sport in this country, but also increase the global attraction and US support of these world-class events.

These two regions are going to be terrific backdrops for the world’s most advanced form of racing.”

10/26 update:  The above master layout for the circuit surface online this morning and shows several interesting details about the new circuit, including pit, track and facilities layout around the circuit.  It’s not known at this time if this is a finalized plan, however, the drawing notes show the seating capacity at 125,000 and not 100,000 as was mentioned at yesterday’s conference with 6,000 hillside seats and 119,000 seaside seats.

Share your thoughts on a second Formula 1 race coming to the US, and where else you’d like to see F1 race




Filed under American F1 circuits, American F1 Events, American F1 Fans, F1 and business, F1 in America, Formula 1 New Jersey, GP of America, NASCAR, United States Grand Prix

V8 Supercars: A Crossover Hit in America

SPEED’s first ever live coverage of this year’s Bathurst 1000 V8 Supercar race recently introduced Americans to an exciting and competitive racing series abroad, while showcasing a stock car series that has great appeal with NASCAR and F1 fans alike.  In a country where NASCAR dominates motorsport headlines and broadcasts, V8 Supercars are positioned well between these two groups of fans in the US and make for plenty of new connections and conversation between them.

To cover the race, SPEED sent over NASCAR ambassador Darrell Waltrip to Australia, and their decision to do so was well rewarded before the race even began.  The stock car champion took the passenger seat for a hot lap around the 3.9 mile circuit in the right hand drive Holden of Jason Bright, an Australian who competed against Mark Webber in Formula Ford early in his career:

Darrell Waltrip on the ride of his life around Mount Panorama

In this video, if DW’s eyes didn’t tell the story of the ride in a V8 Supercar, his commentary did, and what he said certainly wouldn’t remind anyone of a race he called recently.  For fans of Formula 1, it was refreshing to see someone used to ovals experience the twists and hills normally associated with a grand prix circuit.

Back in the announcer booth, Waltrip’s familiar “Boogity, boogity, boogity, let’s go racing boys!” was on cue at the beginning of the race, although this time from a standing start.  It was great to hear DW get into his familiar rhythm calling the race, pointing out the different sponsors (even explaining what a ‘fair dinkum’ was), while talking about stock cars equipped with real time telemetry, center lock wheel nuts and wet racing tires – all familiar to fans of Formula 1.

Even if cars with fenders didn’t look familiar to open wheel racing purists, the liveries on them did, and Team Vodafone stood out as a familiar sponsor logo throughout the race.  Earlier this year, Team Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver Jenson Button took the MP4/23 out on track to set a new course record and swapped cars with driver Craig Lowndes for an event similar to the Mobil 1 seat swap held this year with Tony Stewart and Lewis Hamilton.

Onboard with Jenson Button around Mount Panorama

This year’s race started ahead of the Japanese Grand Prix, which many F1 fans in the US watched live, and due to the 1000’s late finish, Americans tuning in for the start at Suzuka caught a dramatic race to the finish line.  Not a bad introduction to the US as the V8 Supercar series gears up to visit the purpose built F1 track at Circuit of the Americas in 2013.

V8 Supercars are a great show for all fans of racing, and the next race takes place this weekend with drivers from F1, NASCAR, Indycar, Le Mans and other series competing at Australia’s Gold Coast, and will be shown live this Saturday evening on SPEED.

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Filed under American F1 circuits, Circuit of the Americas, Events, F1 and branding, F1 and business, F1 broadcasting in America, linkedin, NASCAR, Uncategorized, V8 Supercar