A Historical Look at the US Formula 1 Race

Lewis Hamilton

In the world of Formula 1, the United States has always occupied a significant place. The Circuit of the Americas, Austin is one of those four difficult tracks in the world that are designed in the anticlockwise manner. That’s why only Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel are only present drivers who have succeeded to win in this US track. Ahead of Formula 1, let’s have a look on the history of the US Formula 1 race.

Since 1908, the United States Grand Prix has been started and that time it was popularly known as the American Grand Prize. After around 44 editions of this race held in 10 different locations, it had become a part of Formula 1 World Championship. Since 2012, the US Formula 1 Race has been taking place at the Circuit of the Americas, Texas, around 12 miles south of Austin.

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Origin of The US Formula 1 Race

In order to showcase the road racing spirit of America, William Kissam Vanbderbilt started a series of the road race in the United States taking inspiration from Circuit des Ardennes and Gordon Bennett Cup races. Soon this Vanderbilt Cup got immense popularity among the American and European competitors. But due to problems with crowd controls and death of the spectator, the event was cancelled in 1907. Later on, with the initiation of the Savannah Automobile Club, Savannah again started the race by sponsoring American grand Prize. Since they followed the Grand Prix rules, they got the right to stage this grand race.

The Grand Prize Era

In the Grand Prize era, the lengthened version of the race took 25.13 mile where 14 European and 6 American entries including the teams from Benz, Renault and Fiat. In 1909, the race was postponed due to some issues. However, after much battle, the race started again in 1911 with the collaboration of the Vanderbilt Cup. However, during this period of the US Grand Prix, several accidents and injuries took place.

The Grand Prize in San Francisco, 1915

In the year 1915, the race reallocated to San Francisco, in collaboration with Panama–Pacific International Exposition. Due to the outbreak of World War I, most of the participants and cars were from America only, except few imported cars. In San Francisco, the track was 3.84 miles and oval in shape. In the next year, the cup again returned to Santa Monica being a part of the AAA National Championship. Here Dario Resta took the point of championship as Johnny Aitken tok over his teammate Wilcox’s car for win.

The Indianapolis 500

After the 1916, the grand Prize was discontinued and later on Indianapolis 500 came in the scenario of the US formula 1 race following the regulation of grand Prix and this race as included with the World Championship from 1950 to 1960.

Watkins Glen

From August, 1961, Watkins Glen Grand Prix Race Course hosted the Grand Prix for the next 20 years. It has the longest record for hosting any formula 1 race in the US history.

Other American Grands Prix

There are several other American Grands Prix as in 1976, Long beach Grand Prix became a location for the US Formula 1 where another location is the Caesars Palace Grand Prix in Las Vegas debuted in 1981. Moreover, Detroit Grand Prix and Dallas Grand Prix also had the record for hosting the race.

However, Indianapolis Grand Prix, Austin and Phoenix are considered as the vital locations for both the US Formula 1 and World Championship.