By Adam Tate, Managing Editor
The U.S. Grand Prix at Circuit of the Americas will know its fate by the end of February, according to circuit chairman Bobby Epstein.
This follows news from early November that the future of the race is at stake due to issues with funding from the State of Texas. The original deal between the track and the state had annual contributions from the government coming in at $25,000,000 per year through 2022. However new leadership in the State comptroller’s office and a new formula applied to the economic impact of the event has the State set to drop its support to just $19,500,000 with some even calling for the State support to end all together.
This is all off the back of declining attendance figures and last October’s race which suffered enormous delays and attendance problems due to extreme rain and flooding in the area.
Both Bernie Ecclestone and Epstein remain optimistic that a deal will be done to find the additional funds and secure the future of the race, but no one involved is ready to make an announcement.
“I certainly can’t confirm anything at this point, but for sure there will be something within the next 30 days. We’ll have an answer definitely before the end of February.” – Bobby Epstein
The impact of the race on F1’s image in America, the impact of the circuit on Austin and the impact of the circuit for other series has been huge. Even in last October’s dreadful conditions, many fans stuck it out, their dedication rewarded with the most exciting race of the year.
F1 has finally carved out a permanent home in the U.S. and to loose it now due to funding issues would be a huge disservice to the fans, the drivers, the teams and the sport.