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Everything You Need to Know About the Las Vegas GP

Formula One returns to Las Vegas for one of the most anticipated races of the 2023 season. It’s on a brand-new street track, which presents many different challenges, and is sure to be a spectacle like no other.

As we prepare for F1 cars racing along the Las Vegas Strip, here’s everything you need to know about the weekend ahead.

Make Sure You Don’t Miss It!

The Las Vegas Grand Prix features a rather unusual schedule, so study up to not miss any of the action.

Thursday is now ‘practice day’ with everything moving one day earlier compared to the normal race weekend schedule. FP1 takes place in the evening, but FP2 starts at midnight and runs into Friday morning. It’s the same story for ‘qualifying day’ – FP3 takes place on Friday evening but qualifying starts at midnight and runs into Saturday morning.

Qualifying and the race (which is at 10pm local on Saturday) both take place on the same day. And the race start time is the latest F1 start time in the sport’s history.

While the timetable brings challenges for the team at the track, it’s also tricky for the crew back in Brackley in the Race Support Room. The schedule is similar to the Japanese GP, with work starting around 2am GMT.

Take a look at the full schedule on our Las Vegas race page.

How Cold Is It Going To Be?!

One of the biggest challenges that we’re expecting over the Las Vegas Grand Prix weekend are the temperatures. It can get very cold in the desert in November, and it isn’t uncommon for temperatures to reach single digits (Celsius).

What’s the forecast currently then? A few days out, it looks like it may be slightly warmer than usual at this time of year. Temperatures may stay above 10 degrees Celsius. The record held by the 1978 Canadian Grand Prix for coldest F1 race in history, where temperatures dropped to five degrees Celsius, may be safe.

F1 Has Been Here Before

Newer fans of F1 might not know that Formula One has in fact raced in Las Vegas before. There was a two-year stint from 1981 to 1982 where the Caesars Palace Grand Prix was part of the calendar.

The races were held on a temporary street circuit located in the car park of the famous Caesars Palace hotel and on both occasions hosted the season finale. They were won by Williams’ Alan Jones (1981) and Tyrrell’s Michele Alboreto (1982).

For us as a team though, this will mark our first race visit to Sin City!

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We'll Be Racing Down The Strip

However, 2023 marks the first time F1 has ever raced on the iconic Las Vegas Strip, which forms an important part of the track – the long back straight between Turn 12 and Turn 14, which is a 1.9km flat-out blast.

The back straight will see F1 cars zoom past iconic landmarks like the half-scale Eiffel Tower replica, Bellagio Fountains and some of its most famous hotel complexes. Later in the lap, cars navigate around the Sphere.

What’s the Rest of the Track Like?

The 6.201km Las Vegas Strip Circuit is the second-longest lap of the calendar, behind Spa-Francorchamps, and features 17 corners – 11 left-handers and six right-handers.

It’s a high-speed track with many long straights separated by tight and twisty corners. We’re expecting top speeds close to Monza levels and 78% of the lap distance taking place at full throttle – one of the highest percentages of the season.

There is a set-up trade-off to be found to not sacrifice top speeds, while still ensuring the car retains good mechanical grip and downforce for those slower corners.

There are two DRS zones, located between Turn 4 and 5, and then on the back straight between Turn 13 and Turn 14. The corners directly after the DRS zones, Turns 4 and 14, are the most likely overtaking opportunities.

What’s Going On Off-Track?

For the team, the Las Vegas GP will be one of the busiest of the season, with a huge hospitality programme alongside plenty of exciting partner activations taking place across the race week itself. It’s taken about a year to prepare for Vegas, including finalising our new three-storey Vegas Club hospitality area and an impressive guest programme.

For fans in attendance there are plenty of fun off-track activities taking place, as well. There’s an opening ceremony event on Wednesday featuring all 20 F1 race drivers and music artists such as Swedish House Mafia, Keith Urban, J Balvin, and more.

There will also be appearances by the Blue Man Group and Cirque du Soleil. Musical entertainment runs all through the weekend at various venues in and around the circuit, including the Sphere, and there’s plenty of fan areas to enjoy too.

Want to learn more about the penultimate race of the season and a Saturday night spectacular racing down the Strip?

Read Toto's thoughts on the Las Vegas Grand Prix.

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