F1 GP: Five Fast Facts about Miami GP
The second running of the Miami Grand Prix will be the first of three races held in the United States this year as Formula 1 continues to build its presence in the country: the US GP in October will be followed four weeks later by the inaugural Las Vegas GP. But this is not the first time the States has hosted three rounds of a single F1 season: the same happened just over four decades ago, in 1982, which featured the US GP West in Long Beach, the Detroit GP and the Caesars Palace GP (in Las Vegas).
A local hero
Another step in F1's growing popularity in the US has been realised for 2023 with the addition to the grid of an American driver: Logan Sargeant. And the Miami GP is very much a home race for Sargeant, who was born in the neighbouring city of Fort Lauderdale. At the same time, it will be the first car race that the Williams driver has ever contested in North America, having moved his career to Europe at an early age (while competing in karts) to chase his dreams of F1, scoring victories in Formula 3 and Formula 2 along the way.
A layout designed for racing
The Miami International Autodrome is a temporary circuit with the feel of a permanent one, located around the Hard Rock Stadium complex in the suburb of Miami Gardens. As many as 75 different layouts were considered during its design, 36 of which were simulated with the goal of creating a track that was good for racing. It features 19 turns and three DRS zones, with the pit straight being the shortest of those three flat-out sections. The other, longer, zones are on the southern side of the circuit into the Turn 11 left-hander, and at the northern end before the tight Turn 17 left-hander.
Offering greater grip
There will be no obvious changes to the layout for the 2023 race but organisers have taken on feedback from the drivers, some of whom felt the track was particularly slippery away from the racing line that developed as rubber was laid down during the first race weekend. As a result, a new surface has now been laid that should offer more consistent grip, and therefore provide drivers with more possibilities to race side-by-side. Like with any new surface, there could also be an impact on tyre wear and degradation, although this is likely to only become clear after Friday practice.
Elevating the playing field
Usually home to the Miami Dolphins American football team, the Hard Rock Stadium already played its part in the inaugural event as the venue for the podium ceremony – where the top three finishers even received special Pirelli American football helmets. For 2023, part of the paddock will be moved into the stadium, with the team hospitality units to be located on the football field. A new permanent three-tier Paddock Club building has also been constructed above the team garages, and spectator capacity has been increased after almost 250,000 fans visited in 2022.