• Video
  • Oct 23rd 2012 at 11:31AM
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Mario Andretti and Patrick Dempsey were among many other racers on hand over the weekend for the grand opening of the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas. With the Formula One US Grand Prix set for November 18, the track surface is ready for action, but there is still plenty of work to be done before the track's opening race.

Andretti cut a ceremonial ribbon and then completed the track's first lap in the same Lotus 79 racecar in which he won six races and a World Championship in 1978. The legendary driver commented on how unique the elevated Turn One will be, calling it the track's "marquee corner." After Andretti hit the track, other vehicles also put laps on the newly finished course including a unique three-seater F1 car.

Formula One will kick off the racing at the new track, but COTA will also host races for MotoGP, American Le Mans Series, Australian V8 Supercars and the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Cars Series. Check out the video of the news report below along with some additional videos showing cars in action around the brand-new track.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 2 Years Ago
      God Bless man's ability to create awesome stuff. And God bless Mario.
      • 2 Years Ago
      greatest American racing hero ever I remember the 1st time I saw Mario Andretti in person in he paddock of a racetrack.......I was mouth agape and he waved at me............ He waved :)
        Carbon Fibre
        • 2 Years Ago
        Not for me. He's Italian for me.
        • 2 Years Ago
        I've met him several times, Mario really is a super nice guy and very down too earth.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Flat out amazed! I swore it would never happen. Great job Texas. Every major series needs to have an event here. Lets hope F1 attendance is good so old fickle Bernie doesn't loose interest and pull the plug, as he is known to do.
        • 2 Years Ago
        My brother lives in Austin and he said that the entire city is stoked about this race. Expecting over 200,000 people coming in to Austin over the weekend and I think all seats have sold out.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wow! Im so excited to see it! they better lay down that landscaping well because all I could afford was that GA grass seats lol
      • 2 Years Ago
      Cant wait to see all the F1 trucks roll in!
      • 2 Years Ago
      Turn 1 looks like a killer!!!
      • 2 Years Ago
      Sure there are more spectacular looking race tracks for F1 around the world but this is a very impressive looking race track when you realize it's been built with private money.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Sounds like its been a while since Mario has run an old F1 clutch!
        • 2 Years Ago
        Or a while since ~anyone~ has run ~that~ old F1 clutch... but yeah! Interesting to hear the difference in sounds 35 years makes, and also how much vibration difference there was.
      • 2 Years Ago
      raced this in he virtually seems pretty cool, definitely going to a trackday when i do my cross country road trip.
      Jim R
      • 2 Years Ago
      Looks like a great track. The racing here should be pretty intense.
      • 2 Years Ago
      finally a track gets it right - regardless of whether the hill goes up or down, having a CONVEX braking zone means the path of the car is extremely sensitive to small errors in braking judgement. a small overshoot means you have a lot less grip to recover because the ground has dropped away. along with plenty of space to make opportunities out of opponents' error (and also avoid first lap pile-ups), T1 looks like a real driver's corner in a sport where too much of the competition is between cars
      • 2 Years Ago
      Wow, this looks a lot more hardcore than I imagined.
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