• Jul 27th 2010 at 3:29PM
  • 39
Back in May, Formula One Group CEO Bernie Ecclestone announced that the racing organization had secured a deal with the city of Austin, Texas to bring the series to America for 10 years. All of that sounded great to American racing fans, but there have been lingering questions as to whether it was possible to get the city ready for F1 by 2012, which is when the contract is scheduled to go into effect.

At least one piece of the puzzle is now resolved as the location for the future track has been revealed at a press conference today in Austin. A total of 900 acres is said to be available at a site in southeastern Travis County, most of which had previously been set aside for a planned subdivision called Wandering Creek.

At this point, officials for the proposed track hope to have permits in hand and work beginning on the site in December. Says Bobby Epstein, an investor in Wandering Creek, "I'm elated and hope this all comes to fruition... I'm highly optimistic that all the moving parts will come together."

According to News 8 in Austin, Red McCombs, founder of the McCombs Automotive Group and former owner of the San Antonio Spurs and Minnesota Vikings, is backing the project, which he is reportedly calling "Speed City." Want to see the proposed site for yourself? Click here for a Google Map of the location, which coincidentally enough (or not) is fortuitously close to the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

[Source: Statesman, News 8]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Does that mean Austin will finally get a WyoTech school? I hear those schools are top notch! Keep me informed!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Google says 1723 miles for me. Road Trip!

      I'd heard it was actually much less expensive to fly to China and see the GP there than it was to fly from California to Indy and get lodging there. I'd guess Malaysia would be cheap to stay in too.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Some clarification needed here - "...the racing organization had secured a deal with the city of Austin, Texas..." The deal is with Full Throttle Productions, a private corporation - the city of Austin had nothing to do with the contract between F1 management and Full Throttle. The city will see positive economic impacts throughout the tourist and hospitality industries, and will be responsible for road and other supporting infrastructure, traffic control, and perhaps some off-site security. I don't know whether this site is within the city limits of Austin, but perhaps in it's ETJ. Do any Austin-area residents know for sure?

      900 acres sounds much better than the initial reports of only 500. I want to see at least a 3-mile road course with a long straight to allow the usual F1 speeds approaching 200 mph. Comments about where the US GP "should be" are pointless - Laguna Seca is too short, and the Indy group passed on the opportunity. They didn't want to compete - the successful proposal is by Full Throttle. You have to have a viable proposal, investors, and a strong local market. State support in the form of the Texas Major Events Trust Fund was also a strong selling point, and that tax-sharing fund will reimburse the city for it's support expenses.

      The local newspaper, the Austin American-Statesman, has been covering this story in detail. Search the sports section for "F1."


      Why the scare comments about high ticket prices? If too much for you, we won't see you there, same reason you won't see me at a Cowboys game in Arlington. But we'll have a contingent at the first and subsequent races - it's a great sport, and Austin will see a tremendous amount of international attention when the United States Grand Prix comes to Texas!
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's not 'scare' comments. Just common sense. This is a lot more expensive than some are expecting it to be. Just about every aspect of F1 aside from watching it on Television is extremely expensive. Saying 'so what? if it's too much you won't be there and I don't care!' misses the point.

        I'm sure it will be able to sell out. Any US Grand Prix that isn't a complete disaster will sell plenty of tickets at a very good price (for the track).

        I think the real scare is concerns this location won't be nearly as pretty as the hill country. I'll wait and see.

        The City of Austin is merely an extension of the state government, like all Texas municipalities. And yeah, the state has forked over a ton of money and there is a deal. And it's a great deal for Texans, even those who don't care for motorsports, to have an F1 track. I hope it all works out... you never know with those F1 people.
      • 5 Years Ago
      YES! about 30 min away from my house. right near my job (airport) I will be there 2012
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm super pumped for this to happen...never been to an F1 race as I just got into motorsports as the race in Indy died off...poor timing I guess.

      I definitely won't miss this one!
        • 5 Years Ago
        You wont regret it. I don't know how will the seating and surroundings be to audience there when/if it's ready, but the sound already is something you will remember for rest of your life.
        I try to get to F1 races once every 3 years.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Might I suggest you consider going to an F1 event in a different country. They are so expensive if you bring a lady with you, that the cost of flying out to some cool country actually begins to make a lot of sense. Especially with the sinking currencies around the globe, you can probably get more that just a race, but at nearly the same cost.

      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm still in shock that there's going to be an F1 circuit twenty minutes from my house.

      SE Austin's been the assumption ever since the announcement. Close to the airport, lots of open and relatively affordable land. I'd have loved to see the track built west in the beginnings of the Hill Country, with all the vistas and interesting topography that would entail, but between the cost of land, environmental concerns, and traffic flow it was never going to happen.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I just cannot believe they're going to put this track on the SE side of Austin and not in the 'real' hill country! A track's personality comes from the property it's placed on... Laguna Seca in the rolling hills off of the Pacific (visited it), Spa in the mountains of the Ardennes Forest (visited it), Monaco along the Mediterranean Sea (walked it), the Nürburgring Nordschleife in the Eifel mountains (driven it)...

      Obviously property costs were the #1 priority in selecting track location. There is no doubt the property out near Bee Cave would have been more expensive but I think the costs would have been justified. We're probably going to get another Tilke cookie cutter track where passing zones are 'engineered' and the layout has nothing to do with the topography (have you seen the Malaysian GP circuit or how he butchered Hockenheim?!). I sure hope I'm wrong!

      Houston, TX
      • 5 Years Ago
      One step closer to reality. I'm officially stoked. Hopefully the world won't end before I can make it to the race.
      • 5 Years Ago
      And it'll help reinforce Bastrop's reinvention as a more high-end catering "suburb". Who'd have thought that would happen even 5 years ago?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Bastrop is awesome.

        I almost bought a house there, but it's too far from Austin for my commute. It's going to be a different place in ten years, I guess, which is a shame. People living in Central Texas should come visit... it's a charming little town.

        Crime is very low, but some idiot broke into a 75 year old man's house and the old man killed him with a steak knife. This is one of the most awesome places because of the awesome people.
      • 5 Years Ago
      It won't happen. I attended the Brickyard 400 this past weekend, lucky if half the seats were filled. Motorsports is dying. I think that people have too many other options.
        • 5 Years Ago
        No, people right now have too little money. Especially the typical NASCAR fan (middle-class income). If the economy picks up in the next 2 years (it better), that single race should be a hit.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I don't think the economy will pick up that much within 2 years. We might be lucky to be where we are today.

        However, I also think there are more than enough Americans willing to pay for an event like this. Nascar and Indy can seat 100,000 fans for many dozens of events a year. this is one event per year. It's completely different and they could probably sell ten times the tickets they will be able to provide seating for.

        Also, Nascar's problems are not because Motorsport is dying. Give me a break. The product is terrible and it's still drastically more popular than it was 20 years ago.
      • 5 Years Ago
      That sucks for Driveway Austin...

      Driveway Austin is a unique motorsports training and entertainment complex located in the heart of Austin, Texas. This state-of-the-art motoring academy brings a European style and flair to Central Texas. The superb Grand Prix Course has elevation changes, signature corners, extensive training facilities and a F1 calibre track that weaves its way through canopies of trees alongside the Colorado River.

      It was conceived and designed by retired Ferrari GTP race driver and sports marketing entrepreneur Bill Dollahite.

      The 90 acre complex is situated approximately 10 minutes from downtown Austin and 5 minutes from Austin Bergstrom International Airport, convenient for business and social activities. The location is surrounded by greenbelt keeping it isolated from adjacent development and ensuring its scenic setting for years to come.
      The world class circuit design incorporates features of internationally famous tracks around the world including Fiorno, Imola, Laguna Seca, Road Atlanta and Monaco.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Why would it? Imagine all the F1 fans in their hot cars that would want to go tool around a little track for a while. When I was in Montreal this past year for my first F1 experience, I went go-karting because that was something all of us in our little group liked to do for fun. Smaller-scale, but same principle.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hey! Thats an hour from where I live. Great!
        • 5 Years Ago
        20 minutes for me! Even greater!
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