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More than 113,000 Sunday, 250,000 for weekend, in year 2 at COTA

Nov 17, 2013, 5:50 PM EDT

F1 US Grand Prix Auto Racing AP

Circuit of the Americas has, for the second year running, produced a three-day weekend crowd of north of 250,000 spectators for the United States Grand Prix.

Official attendance numbers from the track were released today, with a mark of 113,162 fans in attendance on Sunday to bring the weekend total to 250,324. Friday featured 58,276 fans and Saturday had 78,886 on site.

It’s a slight reduction from last year’s numbers, which were 265,499 overall and 117,429 on Sunday. Some aerial shots showed a handful of grandstands – the one leading onto the backstraight one of them – not filled up.

But what likely occurred was a rise in single-day general admission tickets, which were available this year for the first time. Last year, all attendees needed to buy a three-day weekend pass and this year, single-day tickets could be purchased.

The second year is a crucial year for a racing event, and to see the numbers on par with the inaugural year is a very positive sign for the future of the USGP at COTA.

The U.S. fans now have had their chance to see Sebastian Vettel win in person, as he did Sunday with yet another crushing performance.

  1. wallio - Nov 17, 2013 at 6:35 PM

    While this is good news, it’ll be irrelevant if New Jersey goes through. That race will halve attendance sadly.

    • Matthew - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:59 PM

      I wouldn’t be too sure, Wallio…to be fair, having 2 Grand Prix events in the U.S. shouldn’t cut attendance at COTA that much as a good chunk of the fans who might only attend Austin would, if various factors play out (the F1 calendar, ticket prices, etc.) to their advantage. In addition, another decent chunk of a potential F1 audience in New Jersey are likely to be F1 fans from the New England & Eastern Canada region who probably will attend the Canadian GP and will, like some of their Austin brethren, be thrilled to have a second GP to attend on North American soil.

    • Martin Leitch - Nov 17, 2013 at 10:25 PM

      Wallio,
      That’s just an odd comment. I agree with Matthew. A New Jersey F1 race is geographically likely to have more of an impact on Montreal than Austin. Having two F1 races in the US would probably bring in more US fans to the sport and possibly increase attendance at both locations. However, the word is that NJ is not likely to happen anytime soon. A Mexico race is more likely to happen before NJ.

  2. drylake - Nov 18, 2013 at 12:46 AM

    Interesting how this possibly plays into Republican primary politics. There’s Governor Perry handing out the trophies. There is no more difficult sports organization to deal with than F1 under Bernie, yet Texas was able to steer 20 million seed money to the building of COTA and landed the USGP. The Jersey shore continues to be mentioned yet Governor Christie just can get it done. Would love to see a debate where Perry quips, “So how’s that Formula One race workin’ out for ya, Chris?”

    • indycarseries500 - Nov 18, 2013 at 10:31 AM

      The NY/NJ govenments aren’t involved with the NJGP like Texas is with USGP.

      Also I’m pretty sute CotA and/or Octane will have to worry about the NJGP taking attendance away.

  3. albucasis - Nov 18, 2013 at 10:17 PM

    You mean “…will NOT have to worry…”, right? At this point even Leo Hindery must be secretly ready to close the book on NJ. I’d be surprised if more than a relative handful of people would be deciding whether to attend only one US-based GP to the exclusion of of the other, even if NJ happens, against all odds.

  4. kitnamania13 - Nov 19, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Forget about New Jersey. The real threat to Austin is the possibility of no Mexican drivers next year.

  5. bill660 - Nov 20, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    When Jersey appeared scheduled the week after Monaco, and the week before Montreal, it was the FIA’s way of saying it had no chance of happening.

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