Liberty Media buys land in Las Vegas for F1 track

Formula 1 will return to Las Vegas next November

Formula 1’s commercial rights holders have purchased land in Las Vegas that will be used for the pit and paddock complex next November.

An all-new business model is set to be used for the Las Vegas Grand Prix with Liberty Media set to self-promote via its Live Nation business.

That differs from its usual model which charges promoters a figure somewhere in the region of $60 million to host the event.

One of the key challenges facing Liberty Media with putting on the event was how it would house the travelling circus, with suggestions the paddock could be some distance from the pit lane.

That issue has now been resolved with confirmation that Liberty Media has acquired a 39-acre plot for the sum of $339 million.

“The momentum in the United States continues with this weekend’s inaugural Miami GP,” said Greg Maffei, Liberty Media’s CEO.

“You can’t have not heard about the announcement of our Las Vegas GP for November 2023. As we’ve noted before, that’ll be a night race down the Strip.

“Notably and differently than most places, F1 and Liberty Media are self-promoting the race in partnership with local stakeholders and Live Nation.

“The build out for this track will require increased capex [capital expenditure] and opex [operational expense] to develop.

“It’s too early to provide you with numbers, but we intend to update you later this year.

“I would note that Liberty Media did enter an agreement to acquire 39 acres east of the Strip to lock in circuit design and create capacity for the pit and paddock, among other hospitality and race support venues,” he added.

“I expect that transaction will close in the second quarter, and the purchase price was $240 million, which will be funded by cash on hand at the F1 Group level.”

Though much of the circuit will take in existing roads, the opening complex of the lap will use a dormant part of the city, behind the Planet Hollywood complex, near Koval Lane, east of the Strip.

No date has yet been set for the Las Vegas event, which will become the third United States race on the current schedule, beyond November 2023.

Figures converted from USD to AUD at 1:1.41

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