Las Vegas Grand Prix Race Timetable Released
The time table for the much-anticipated Las Vegas Grand Prix was revealed this week, marking a significant milestone in the lead-up to November’s event.
The Las Vegas Grand Prix weekend will kick off November 16, with gates opening at 6:00 p.m. for practice runs. Drivers are slated to hit the track between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. on that day, and again between midnight and 1:00 a.m. on November 17. The following day, November 17, will feature another round of practice, with gates for fans opening at 6:00 p.m.
The final practice round is scheduled between 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., followed by qualifying rounds from midnight to 1:00 a.m. on November 18.
The main race will start at 10 p.m., featuring 50 laps around the 3.8-mile circuit. The loop will encompass iconic landmarks of the Las Vegas Strip, including the Bellagio fountains, Wynn Las Vegas, New York-New York and Caesars Palace.
The track will have 14 turns, offering a blend of high-speed straights and challenging corners, promising an exhilarating experience worthy of one of the world’s most-visited cities.
Tough Thing to Do
To ensure the smooth conduct of the race, extensive preparations are underway.
One of the significant undertakings is the repaving of roads around the Las Vegas Strip. The final stage of this repaving project began in late July and is set to conclude by early October. Roads affected by this project include Sands Avenue, Las Vegas Boulevard, and areas surrounding the MSG Sphere site.
However, with preparations come disruptions. Several road closures are expected in the lead-up to and during the race weekend. While this might cause temporary inconveniences for residents and visitors, the organizers are confident that the prestigious event and its economic potential will be worth it.
The Las Vegas Grand Prix will be a globally prestigious sporting event, but also a massive economic booster for the city – which is currently posting billion dollar revenue months across its gambling venues.
Steve Hill, the CEO and president of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority, has projected Nevada businesses, such as its famous brick & mortar casino venues, could see well more than a billion dollars from the event.
“The board has certified that Formula 1 will have an economic impact over a quarter of a billion. It will be well past that. It will be over a billion dollars,” he said.
However, Hill, who recently received a hefty bonus for his efforts in bringing record numbers of visitors to Las Vegas, was also open about the challenges to overcome for a successful race.
“It’s the most difficult thing this city has ever done from an event standpoint, and it’s because we have to create the venue while we are also putting on the event,” he said.
“Doing that in the streets of Las Vegas and Clark County, it’s a tough thing to do.”
An Absolute Mess
This anticipated financial boost has led to discussions between Formula 1 officials and the Clark County commission regarding advertising rights along Las Vegas Boulevard during the race.
Other sticking points also posed challenges for race organizers, with hundreds of thousands of extra visitors expected.
The city’s Harry Reid International Airport has been forced to lay on more private jet parking spots for well-heeled international visitors, and road closures have caused some concern among locals.
Most recently, the Las Vegas Strip’s casino resort hotels clashed with Formula 1 over proposed extra fees imposed on venues with views of the race.
When asked about that possibility however, Hill assured reporters it was a nonissue.
“They have no plans to do that,” he said. “That’s not going to happen.”
However, some residents still need convincing that the extra income will be worth the hassle.
One local Uber driver, Howard Wilson, spoke to KNTV Las Vegas last month. He was not a fan of the roadworks causing congestion and traffic, and did not hold back on his opinion of the race overall.
“It’s an absolute mess,” he said. “For me, it’s not worth it to have the race here. I think that would be true if you ask 90% of the people here. If I may be honest, I think it’s being done by the rich for the rich.”