The inaugural round of the Las Vegas GP was touted as the highlight of the entire 2023 calendar. The race which was slated to tear across the Sin City streets soon became the most-awaited Grand Prix weekend in recent F1 history. However, the actual event encountered multiple roadblocks and in general, failed to live up to the expected standards. After cancelling the FP1 session over a massive oversight in terms of driver safety protocols, the organisers decided to pull off a shameful act on the spectators.
The audience members who had already bought the extremely costly tickets were made to vacate the grandstands ahead of the delayed FP2 session. Then, as compensation, they were given some $200 merchandise vouchers. Throughout the Las Vegas GP debacle, Max Verstappen remained critical of the organisers and the entire Grand Prix weekend. Several executives have since come forward and expressed disdain over the Red Bull driver’s words. Nico Rosberg has now joined their voices as he commented on the current World Champion berating the sport’s executives over the Las Vegas race.
Former Mercedes racer Rosberg has stayed attached to Formula 1 despite retiring at the end of the 2016 season. Having seen the organization of the race up close, he claimed it was of poor taste for Max to drag the FIA for the Las Vegas GP being more of an entertainment extravaganza than a classical race, as reported by PlanetF1.
We have to accept that we need to dedicate some time to give back to sponsors and give back to fans because they’re the ones who pay our salaries.
The kickoff of the highly anticipated Las Vegas GP weekend unfolded as a complete disaster, prompting the FIA to release a detailed statement explaining the sequence of events leading to the catastrophic day. Sky Sport F1’s lead commentator, David Croft, took to Twitter to highlight the statement’s conspicuous absence of remorse or apology. The FIA’s statement, dissected by David Croft, revealed an absence of the word ‘sorry.’
The disaster began with the cancellation of the FP1 session after just 8 minutes, triggered by a loose drain cover that wreaked havoc on Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari, causing extensive damage. Sainz escaped with minor injuries to his lower back. Subsequently, 30 more loose drain covers were discovered around the 6.2 km street circuit, exposing a significant safety oversight by F1 organizers.
The crew spent over 2 hours addressing the issue to ensure the smooth running of FP2. However, this resulted in a two-and-a-half-hour delay for the FP2 session, initially scheduled for midnight local time. FP2 eventually commenced at 2:30 am local time, with a disheartening directive for spectators, who had purchased high-priced tickets—they were abruptly asked to vacate the grandstand. The entire session unfolded without a single fan in attendance.