In this week's video, we discuss how the city is being turned upside down for this race, plus we provide course details, road closures, and viewing options.
The drivers aren’t at the starting line yet, but it’s getting close, as the Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix is less than a month away, as race festivities will run from Thursday, 16 November through Saturday, 18 November.
Over 300,000 people are expected to attend the events, which kick off with practice runs for the drivers on Thursday, 16 November at 8:30 p.m. Additional practice laps will take place on Friday, 17 November at 12 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. The qualifying round is Saturday, 18 November at 12 a.m. The actual Formula 1 Grand Prix race will take place Saturday, 18 November at 10 p.m.
The course begins on Koval Lane and heads toward Sphere, then down Sands Avenue turning onto the Strip where the cars will race past resorts at speeds up to 200 miles per hour before turning onto Harmon Avenue and then back to Koval Lane. The actual race will go for 50 laps or two hours, whichever is shorter.
However, with any big event, comes change, and that’s leaving Vegas residents and tourists frustrated with the preparations and limitations as a result of the race.
For instance, repaving of roads has been going on for months, new race facilities have been built, grand stands are being constructed, and just recently lighting has started to go up all along the race course. There will also be safety barriers placed on Koval Lane, Sands Avenue, Harmon Avenue, on the Strip and at Sphere prior to the race.
If that wasn’t enough there will be 5 p.m. through 2 a.m. road closures during the race festivities. The Strip will closed between Aria Resort & Casino and Wynn Las Vegas, with additional road closures on Harmon and Sands Avenues as well as the west side of East Flamingo Road.
However, there will be vehicle bridges built on East Flamingo Road over Koval Lane and a few side roads to allow cars access to the area inside the race course.
Additionally, there will be pedestrian bridges near the pit stops and at Sphere as well as Koval Lane and East Flamingo Road.
Ticket prices start at $500 for general admission, but can go much higher with some packages running $40,000 or more. However, if you don’t want to shell out a lot of money, then your best option will be to watch the events on ESPN. The two practice rounds will be televised on Thursday, 16 November, and Friday, 17 November, at 11:25 p.m. and 2:55 a.m. EST. The qualifying round will be televised on Saturday, 18 November, at 2:55 a.m. EST. The actual race will be televised on Sunday, 19 November, at 12:55 a.m. EST.
With the service-related employee workers strike looming and picket lines popping up all along the Strip, suspicion is mounting that if their demands are not met then they will walk off the job right before the race festivities, which would throw the city into complete chaos.