MAY 7, 2022
F1 buys land and will promote Las Vegas GP
Formula 1 is going into the business of promoting its own grands prix.
Traditionally, the commercial side of organising races was relatively simple for the commercial rights holder - which at present is Liberty Media.
But instead of simply taking a sizeable fee from a promoter for next year's return of Las Vegas to the calendar, Liberty will host the race itself.
The news comes as La Gazzetta dello Sport revealed a doubling of Formula 1's commercial revenues for the first quarter of 2022 compared to the same period last year.
Formula 1 is reportedly paying $240 million to acquire the 16 hectares of land near the fabled Las Vegas Strip for the permanent paddock and pit buildings.
"Liberty Media has indeed entered into arrangements to acquire land east of the Las Vegas strip," Liberty's CEO Greg Maffei told Wall Street analysts.
"And unlike most other tracks, in this case Formula 1 and Liberty Media are taking on the role of promoter in partnership with local shareholders and Live Nation," he added.
Maffei is not ruling out using the new model for other races, too.
"Let's see how things go in Las Vegas," he said. "We hope to succeed, and then we will think about how to proceed. Perhaps we will become promoters of several more stages.
"I wouldn't turn down that opportunity."
F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali, however, clarified that it is not the start of a whole new business model for the sport.
"Each new promoter adds new strengths and opportunities to our system," he said. "This also affects the promoters of the traditional grand prix, which we treat with great respect.
"I agree with Greg - never say never," the Italian insisted. "But I want to emphasise again that we are very pleased with the promoters that work with us.
"These are very loyal, reliable partners, together with whom we will build an even stronger future."