In a blow to Texas racing fans, the United States Formula 1 Grand Prix has been canceled due to COVID-19. The race weekend, held at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, was originally scheduled for October 23-25.
âThe cancellation is prudent, but painful,â COTA broadcaster Bobby Epstein said in a statement. âWe had successful performers for the evening shows, and this year’s races are fantastic. I am disappointed for the fans, the COTA employees, our community and everyone in the Formula One paddock.â
F1 has held its annual US Grand Prix in Austin since 2012; this is the first time that the COTA race has been canceled.
In his statement, Epstein said that after last year’s sold-out event, advanced ticket sales for 2020 increased by 250%. âOur staff were preparing for our biggest year ever,â he said.
The braking F1 is the second in a series of hard knocks for COTA. On July 10, organizers announced that the Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas was also on hiatus due to the novel coronavirus.
The cancellation of the race is another major economic blow for the hospitality industry. According to COTA, events like F1 and the Red Bull Grand Prix inject more than $ 420 million directly into the local economy.
As for next year’s Grand Prix, those dates have yet to be revealed, but Epstein has said he hopes F1 will return in 2021.
“I hope the pandemic passes soon and that we celebrate 2021 with the greatest Formula 1 Grand Prix in the United States of all time!”