The 2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix will mark Formula One’s long-awaited return to the neon lights and spectacle of Las Vegas. Taking place on November 18th, 2023 around the streets of the Las Vegas Strip, the race promises to be the most expensive race of the year with premium tickets and hotel rooms.
Ahead of the race weekend, there will be a spectacular star-studded opening ceremony featuring performances from legendary musical artists like John Legend, Tiesto, Journey, and Steve Aoki. Teams and drivers will also be introduced on the Las Vegas Strip during this opening event.
With its glitzy casinos, luxury hotels, and world-famous nightlife, Las Vegas is considered Formula One’s biggest bet yet in the American market. It aims to capitalize on the growing popularity of F1 in the United States. The race around the iconic Las Vegas Strip is sure to provide a spectacle unlike any other on the 2023 F1 calendar.
The race will take place in the heart of Las Vegas and will allow anyone on the Strip to catch the action. Thus, securing a room near iconic locations like the Bellagio and Caesars Palace is a sure way to catch the action without any obstruction of the view. Some of the best Las Vegas casinos with the best Formula 1 view include Caesars Palace, Wynn Las Vegas, The Venetian, the Bellagio, and Paris Las Vegas. You can also book VIP packages to enhance your experience.
If you will not be in Vegas, you can catch the show on channels like Super Sport. Most bookies will also stream the race to allow you to get real-time stats.
How Long Is The Las Vegas F1 Circuit?
The average circuit length is anything from 3 to 7 kilometers. Consider some of the famous race circuits below and their lengths:
- Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit is 5.303km,
- Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is 4.361km,
- Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps is 7.004km, and
- Hard Rock Stadium Circuit is 5.41km.
The Las Vegas F1 circuit is 6.201 kilometers long, making it one of the longer circuits in F1 races. The street circuit encircles the strip and has numerous sharp turns coupled with long, straight distances. The drivers will thus have fun maneuvering and must rely on their skills to ensure the 17-turn circuit does not get the best of them.
How Much Distance Will Drivers Cover In The Las Vegas Grand Prix?
Per F1 guidelines, all races must be at least 305 kilometers. Drivers often cover this by making a certain number of laps to cover this distance. For example, drivers in the Lusail Circuit in the Qatar Grand Prix make 57 laps around the 5.419 km circuit to hit 308.825 kilometers. This standard applies to all circuits except the Monaco Grand Prix, where 260 km is the norm. So, what is the case for the Vegas circuit? The drivers will cover 50 laps around the 6.201 km circuit to hit a target of 310.05 kilometers.
For context, here are what other F1 circuits require from drivers:
- The Yas Marina Circuit requires 55 laps around its 5.554 km circuit to reach a distance of 305.355 kilometers,
- The Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace has a circuit length of 4.309km, which requires 71 laps to hit 305.879km, and
- The Zandvoort requires drivers to make 72 laps around its 4.259km circuit for a total distance of 306.648km.
Once again, the Vegas circuit will be on the higher side, and drivers must work hard to complete the race in good time by navigating hundreds of turns.
How Long Will The Las Vegas Grand Prix Be?
While the Vegas circuit is longer than most circuits, the total distance is just slightly higher than other circuits. And since most races average anything from 80 to 100 minutes, early predictions show that the race will be over in under two hours. However, this does not account for red flags or situations that may result in the cars slowing down. Even so, the 2021 FIA guidelines changed the maximum race period to less than three hours. As such, no matter what happens, fans can rest assured that the race will be over three hours after it starts.
Who Are The Favorites?
The Las Vegas Grand Prix will be the first of its kind and has thus attracted attention from drivers who want to make their mark on the circuit. Which drivers have the upper hand per the current standings?
- Max Verstappen
This Red Bull Racing team member ranks as the youngest driver to start and win an F1 race. And as he has had many firsts and boasts 17 wins in this season alone, many expect him to make away with yet another championship. It’s hard not to back a consecutive winner.
- Sergio Perez
Also on the Red Bull Racing team is this veteran driver, who also goes by “Checo.” His strength comes from his ability to maneuver street circuits, and with a 17-turn circuit to beat, he will likely have an advantage. He will also be an asset to Max as he has supported him in the previous championships.
- Lewis Hamilton
This 38-year-old from team Mercedes needs no introduction. With 7 world championships, Hamilton is yet to slow down. His knack for keeping up with the competition despite the track conditions has earned him many points and overwhelming respect from his peers.
- Fernando Alonso
Team Aston Martin will also have a winning shot with Fernando Alonso behind the wheel. He holds the record for most F1 starts and has a two-decade-long career on the circuits. While it has been a while since he won consecutive titles, the Spaniard dethroned Michael Schumacher at a time when few expected it. And in F1, surprises have a way of recurring.
Red Bull Roll The Dice With Vegas Makeover
The World Champions have embraced the inaugural Las Vegas GP with a new look that the Strip would be proud of.
Inspired by the energy, excitement, and neon lights of the city, the RB19 will turn purple for Round 22 of the Formula 1 season, with touches of Vegas’ famous culture decorating the bodywork, revealed today.
While this is the Team’s third unique livery of the season, rounding off a hattrick of USA specials, all thanks to The Paddock’s Make Your Mark campaign, this will be the first race the entirety of the RB19 has been taken over by unique paintwork. From rear wing to front wing, halo to sidepods, Oracle Red Bull Racing has well and truly piled all chips on the Vegas look.
The Make Your Mark campaign has seen members of The Paddock, Oracle Red Bull Racing’s free loyalty programme, powered by the Team’s Title Partner Oracle, challenged by the Team to design a bespoke livery for each of the USA Grands Prix, as Max and Checo race stateside three times in one season for the first time. The campaign generated a huge buzz, with the top designs being put to a vote on the Paddock. Over 24,000 votes were cast by fans, leading to thousands of new sign ups to the platform.
Lindsay Palmer, from Essex, UK, was picked from thousands of entries from fans wanting a chance to hit the jackpot and have their design featured as the Team’s Vegas livery. With purple at its base, her design will look like pink and yellow neon lights are flowing through the car’s bodywork, as the RB19 charges through the streets of Vegas at night. Lindsay will be there to see the moment the livery drops, in another unique reveal moment on Wednesday and will also be trackside with the Team all weekend to see her creation on track.
Team Principal and CEO, Christian Horner said: “It is brilliant to be rounding off our third and final Make Your Mark competition this season here in Nevada for the inaugural Las Vegas GP. It is such a unique way to bring fans into the heart of the Team, giving them the opportunity to design and vote for our Las Vegas livery through our free loyalty programme, The Paddock. We have revealed a fan-designed livery at every US race this year and each design has well and truly delivered; it was quite the task picking a winner. Congratulations to Lindsay, who really put Vegas’ iconic stamp on the design, capturing the energy and excitement of both the city and the Team. Very much looking forward to seeing it racing around the streets of Las Vegas. From what I have seen on the Sim though, that long straight is an incredibly fast one, so you are going to have to keep a close eye on things as the cars fly past under the bright lights of The Strip. It is going to be a special race made even more special by celebrating with a fan-designed livery as we head into the final US race of the season.”
Winner of Make Your Mark Las Vegas, Lindsay Palmer said: “I was so excited to be selected as the winner for Make Your Mark Las Vegas and was completely lost for words when I won. When thinking about what represents Vegas, the first thing that came to mind were the casinos and the bright lights, so I knew this had to be incorporated in my design. I wanted the style to emulate the cars whizzing past the neon lights and I had to make sure playing cards were added too. When I visited the factory, it was amazing seeing the livery come to life and the creation process. I am so excited to go to the race, I have never been to Vegas before and the fact that I can see my car come to life under the iconic Las Vegas lights will be an incredible experience. I cannot wait to see it on track!”
Williams Unveil Las Vegas Throwback Livery
Williams Racing has unveiled its special livery for the 2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix, marking the sport’s return to Sin City for the first time in over 40 years.
The livery takes inspiration from the famed showmanship of Vegas, featuring the ‘Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas’ sign and the cabochon lights that have brought the desert to life throughout its history. The illuminated Williams lettering is a nod to the iconic Neon Boneyard, completing an homage to the electric energy of Vegas across the engine cover and rear wing endplates.
As the final home race for driver Logan Sargeant and the team, this livery celebrates Williams Racing’s American ties and the excitement of racing in Vegas under the lights for the very first time.
Scuderia AlphaTauri Presents Special Las Vegas Livery
Formula 1 is all set to make a return to the streets of Las Vegas this weekend for the first time in 41 years and to say that everyone involved is excited about it would be an understatement. To mark the occasion, the Scuderia AlphaTauri cars raced by Yuki Tsunoda and Daniel Ricciardo will feature a special livery which will look incredible under the floodlights of this night race, as the cars hurtle down the iconic Las Vegas Strip. In fact, continuing the night time theme, the livery will be retained for the following weekend’s season finale, the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The design, featuring white speed streaks flowing down the bodywork takes its inspiration from the AlphaTauri x Brendan Monroe Las Vegas Capsule Collection. Monroe is a Californian artist and muralist who signed the special livery at an amazing launch event last night at the Intrigue Lounge, one of Las Vegas’ hottest nightspots.
The unisex collection includes a down vest as well as two hoodies and two T-shirts. Accessories include a cap, a bucket hat and a belt bag. All products are adorned with a specially designed print inspired by Brendan Monroe’s Black Matte Night Spiral design. It features the artist’s characteristic style and is presented in his signature black/white colour palette.
“I was so excited to have the opportunity to work with AlphaTauri,” said Brendan. “Working together with the creative team at a fashion brand was very inspiring to me. They were instrumental in our collaboration from start to finish and they’ve produced so many beautiful pieces for this special capsule collection.”
“In the very special setting of the Formula 1® Las Vegas race, we are celebrating the launch of this exclusive AlphaTauri Capsule Collection,” said AlphaTauri CEO, Ahmet Mercan. “It is a highlight in the context of our ‘Fashion at the Races’ momentum which started in February 2020 with an unforgettable Formula 1® launch event at Red Bull’s Hangar 7, in Salzburg, Austria, along with several other ground-breaking events, including an AlphaTauri US launch event at New York Fashion Week earlier this year.”
“We are super excited to reveal this special livery in Las Vegas to promote the AlphaTauri capsule collection” commented Fabian Wrabetz, Scuderia AlphaTauri Director of Marketing and Communication. “Delivering a full livery makeover has involved a long planning process behind the scenes, but we enjoyed working closely with the artist to incorporate his unique style into this livery, with which we will proudly race for the last two Grands Prix of the season.”
Race fans won’t have long to wait to see the newly-liveried AlphaTauri AT04 cars in action, as Las Vegas likes to do things differently, so that track action gets underway a day earlier than usual, on Thursday, with the race taking place on Saturday night at 22.00 local time.
Insight: Getting Ready for Las Vegas
“The Las Vegas race is a huge operation,” explains Victoria Johnson, Mercedes Marketing Operations Director. That is true both on and off track for the team. It is one of the most anticipated events in the sport’s history and will present unique challenges.
“In terms of planning, it takes about a year to deliver a race such as Las Vegas,” Victoria continues. Grands Prix such as this, and Miami, “have given us new marketing opportunities and new audiences to tap into. The team have put a huge investment into both of these races.”
That includes a three-storey Mercedes hospitality offering overlooking the track called ‘Vegas Club’. It’s a massive logistical undertaking but one that will re-invent what is possible in terms of on-event guest hosting.
For the team focused on running the cars, Vegas will be just as challenging an operation. “The temperature is due to go down to four or five degrees Celsius overnight. That is very unusual for an F1 race,” explains Sporting Director Ron Meadows. Riccardo Musconi, Head of Trackside Performance, adds: “Another challenge is going to be the time zone. We are going to be working on a Suzuka schedule, so Japanese Grand Prix times but in the US. The people back at the factory will be turning up to work at 2am.”
There are other factors to consider too. “It is going to be a brand-new surface. We don’t know exactly what the aggregate type will be. Nobody will know until we turn up in Vegas and start driving around. I think this will be the key element of the weekend,” Riccardo continues.
Find out more about how the Mecedes team are preparing for the Las Vegas Grand Prix here:
Las Vegas Grand Prix: Fast Facts
- Formula One returns to Las Vegas for the first time in over 40 years this weekend.
- The sport’s previous visits to ‘Sin City’ took place in 1981 and 1982 under the moniker of the Caesars Palace Grand Prix.
- Each edition was that year’s season finale with the Williams of Alan Jones taking victory in 1981 and the Tyrrell of Michele Alboreto victorious in 1982.
- We return to a very different circuit; a 17-corner (11 to the left, six to the right), anti-clockwise 6.201 km high-speed blast through the most famous streets of Las Vegas including the Strip.
- The track is the second-longest on the 2023 calendar, only shorter than Spa-Francorchamps.
- That includes an over 1.9 km flat-out section from the exit of Turn 12 to the braking zone at Turn 14.
- Our initial simulations show that top speeds will be second only to the ‘Temple of Speed’ at Monza.
- These simulations also show that just over 78% of the total lap distance will be taken at full throttle.
- That will be the fourth highest of the season, only behind the Jeddah Street Circuit, the Bahrain International Circuit, and Monza.
- Owing to the slower corners though where the cars take longer to navigate, drivers will spend just over 66% of the lap at full throttle.
- That is the ninth highest amount of the 2023 season and compares closely to Silverstone.
- The set-up trade-off will be ensuring that top speeds are not compromised whilst the car retains good mechanical grip and downforce for the low-speed corners, such as Turns 1-4, Turns 7-9, Turn 12, and Turns 14-16.
- Our simulations also show that there will be five braking events, with three of these designated as heavy. These will occur at Turn 1, Turn 5, and Turn 14.
- Another challenge for the engineers and drivers will be the likely cold temperatures. At night in November, it is not unknown for temperatures to reach single-digit Celsius.
- The lowest record race temperature in F1 history was the 1978 Canadian Grand Prix where the mercury only reached 5ºC.
- For the first time since the 1985 South African Grand Prix, the sport will race on a Saturday.
- Saturday’s race will also be the latest starting Grand Prix in F1’s history. The first night race, the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix, took place at 20:00 local time.
- This year’s Las Vegas Grand Prix will get underway at 22:00 local time, with qualifying taking place at midnight on the same day.
- That schedule means that those supporting in our Race Support Room at Brackley will be working at similar times as they do for the Japanese Grand Prix, reporting to work around 02:00 GMT.
- Oracle Red Bull Racing is seeking a 20th win of the season in Las Vegas, to establish a new Formula 1 record for most wins in a season. The Team is currently tied on 19 wins with Mercedes, who achieved the feat in 2016.
- Max Verstappen claimed his 52nd career victory in the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, passing Alain Prost’s career total by one. Max’s next victory will see him draw level with Seb Vettel’s career tally of 53 wins.
- Sergio Perez can clinch history for the Red Bull Racing Team this weekend, as Oracle Red Bull Racing attempts to finish 1-2 in the Drivers’ Championship for the first time. Checo comes into the weekend 32 points clear of third-placed Lewis Hamilton, and only needs a 26-point gap following the Las Vegas GP to confirm second place.
- Max currently leads the Drivers’ Championship by 266 points, more than Seb Vettel’s entire points total when he claimed Red Bull Racing’s first championship in 2010 (256 points).
- Checo came within 0.053 seconds of pipping Fernando Alonso for a podium finish in Brazil. Only once in F1 history has a driver come closer to scoring a podium, when Jean-Pierre Beltoise beat Bruce McLaren to third place at the 1969 Italian GP by a margin of 0.02 seconds.
With all eyes on the Las Vegas Strip Circuit, history is already in the making. Buckle up!