Formula One has seen a remarkable rise in popularity thanks to the success of the Netflix show Drive to Survive, which helped the sport to achieve a turnover of over $2.5 billion, up 20% year-on-year. The operating profit of the business – the number left after the 10 teams were paid – rose from $92m to $239m. F1 now aims to continue building the sport in the USA and worldwide and attract more fans by offering new innovations on the track, ensuring more competitive racing with new innovations around the weekend like the sprint races, and finding creative ways to grow interest in the sport off the track.
Notably, the forthcoming Las Vegas Grand Prix is a key part of the sport’s long-term growth strategy in the USA and worldwide. “The Las Vegas race is going to be a massive noisemaker for our sport, and it’ll open up our sport to many people who previously were not aware”, said Liberty CEO Greg Maffei. Already, the 2022 results include $19 million in costs related specifically to the Las Vegas event, which is expected to be in the top five of all races in F1’s first year in terms of total profit to the company. The biggest single investment, and an inspired one, has been in a piece of land near the Strip where F1 is building a permanent pit and paddock facility, and which includes the starting grid and a few nearby corners, removing the costs and logistical challenges associated with building a temporary pit complex every year.
F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali said that for the time being, Las Vegas is a special case, and the company will focus on making it a super special event, with no plans to have sole control of other events at present. However, F1 is open to considering expansion of the sort of partnership deal it has with Miami. With plans progressing well, the work begins next spring on resurfacing the track roads, with plans in place to minimise disruption to the Las Vegas flow of traffic in the process, making a long-term investment in Las Vegas, which the company expects to set up the race for decades to come.