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F1 justify surprise 10pm Las Vegas GP start time

F1 justify surprise 10pm Las Vegas GP start time

F1 justify surprise 10pm Las Vegas GP start time

F1 justify surprise 10pm Las Vegas GP start time

F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has justified the decision for handing the Las Vegas Grand Prix the latest race start time in F1 history.

After what will be a 41-year absence from the calendar, the race returns in November next year on an initial three-year contract as F1 draws on the considerable interest in the burgeoning US market.

At a presentation overlooking the famous 'Strip' which will form a part of the 6.2km circuit, Domenicali revealed the race will start at the surprisingly late hour of 10pm.

At present, the latest time a grand prix commences is 8pm, both for the recent event in Saudi Arabia and the upcoming Singapore Grand Prix that makes its long-awaited return in September after a three-year lay-off due to the coronavirus.

The time would appear to alienate F1's heartland UK and European audiences as at that point in the year, the race will start at 5am and 6am respectively.

Yet Domenicali insisted: "It is a perfect time and perfect slot for that event in this context.

"Formula 1 cannot be static, it cannot be in a position to have a race at three o'clock on a Saturday. That would be a total mistake.

"That's the reason why we are flexible. It's the right moment to have the best show in this context, so I don't see any problem with that.

"In terms of the time, the race time on a Saturday is 10pm, so the audience in Europe will be connected. It's perfect.

"[Even] If we would have done earlier or later, everyone will be connected that night with Las Vegas, no doubt."

From a US perspective, Liberty Media CEO Greg Maffei said: "We're going to find real happiness amongst those teenagers who have to get up early on Saturday and Sunday morning and complain that the races are on too early in Europe.

"Now they'll be able to stay up late on Saturday night and enjoy it."

Daily Poll - Is F1 right to add a third race in the United States?

Is F1 right to add a third race in the United States?

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