In just 380 days the construction site behind me will host the 2012 Formula 1 United States Grand Prix.
2012 Calendar Announcement from The Austin Grand Prix on Vimeo.
This news comes from the FIA World Motorsport Council, who met today in Barcelona, Spain and confirmed the 2012 Formula 1 Calendar. The F1USGP is officially set for June 17th, 2012; just 380 days from today. Though there are many construction and logistical hurdles to be cleared, and the viability of the track depends on a pre-race inspection, it looks like work at the track will continue to progress full-speed ahead in order to meet the FIA's deadline.
In addition to setting the 2012 calendar, the WMSC voted unanimously to hold the Bahrain GP on Oct 30th this year, following an on site visit with government officials and the FIA Vice President. If you recall, this year's Bahrain GP was set for March 13, but canceled on February 21 due to political unrest in the country. According to the FIA statement, the intention of reinstating this year's race in Bahrain is to use the GP to unite the people of Bahrain, but there are still large challenges to overcome due to the political and humanitarian state there. With this announcement, there has been loud outcry from teams, drivers and F1 fans worldwide who do not agree with this decision.
The Statesman also shared that next Tuesday the Austin City Council will meet with the COTA team to discuss enrolling the City as the "local sponsoring entity" in order to support the Major Events Trust Fund. Despite rumors and speculation by naysayers, the METF is designed to be a self-sustaining fund that is fueled by increased tax revenues from food, drink, travel and hotel sources in conjunction with major events. Thus, the Austin City Council would play a passive role in this sponsor scenario, and according to Richard Suttle, COTA's lawyer, the city will not be out of pocket for the "rolling loan" needed to kick-start the METF. You can read more at The Statesman.
Well it's no surprise that we're extremely excited about this announcement. We set up a Facebook Event: Formula One Grand Prix of the United States, so be sure to join the event and socialize with us and other fans. We'll be posting information on tickets (the #1 question today!) as soon as it is available, because we want you to join us in Austin in 2012!
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More detailed investigations into the effect of the Bahrain schedule addition and the City Council/METF meeting next Tuesday will follow.