Insight: Getting Ready for Las Vegas
“The Las Vegas race is a huge operation,” explains Victoria Johnson, 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.