Hamilton excited by F1’s profile and growth in the USA

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Lewis Hamilton has spoken about his excitement for the growth of Formula 1’s profile in the United States ahead of this weekend’s race in Austin, Texas.

Hamilton appeared on NBC’s TODAY Show earlier this week, with dozens of fans descending on the plaza just outside of the studio donned in team gear and with flags and signs in support of the world championship leader.

In today’s FIA press conference, Hamilton spoke about his enthusiasm for F1’s growth in the United States, and how he thinks it is a key market for the sport to focus on.

“I think there is a huge market for Formula 1,” Hamilton said. “I think if you watch all the different sports here, the people in this country are so passionate about sports in general, whether it be basketball, baseball or NFL or even NASCAR and IndyCar.

“They are extremely enthusiastic about competition and wheel-to-wheel racing or just real out and out competition. Whilst we only have one race here, there’s lots of opportunity for it to grow. I’ve just definitely seen from 2007, even though we missed out quite a few years, there’s still quite a lot of growth here.

“I was in New York yesterday for example, and there were people waiting outside this building with signs and fans with our team tops on, which was huge.”

Hamilton believes that tapping into the American market will be crucial for Formula 1, and that it has a knack for entertaining.

“Over here, they have a good recipe for good shows,” he said. “When you go and watch an NBA game you know you’re excited the whole way through.

“Same with NFL and the same with baseball and so they have a good recipe for entertaining fans and we can perhaps take a bit of that and add it into this race and maybe others and make it even more attractive.”

Hamilton will be gunning for his third victory in the United States this weekend, having won the event in 2007 and 2012.

NBC/NBCSN SCHEDULE FROM UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:


Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change