F1 will never be an American sport

By Ubaid Parkar, 15 November 2012
© AP Photo/Tim Sharp

Formula 1 has little of chance of seeping into the hearts of Americans despite the sport’s return to the United States for the first time since 2007.

F1 has long tried to break into the American market, with little success, and although the United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas provides a platform, the efforts may just not be enough.

"The truth is we find that there is no crossover," Texas Motor Speedway’s president Eddie Gossage told Reuters. "NASCAR fans tend to look down their nose at Formula 1 fans and Formula 1 fans tend to look down their nose at NASCAR.

"It's apples and sausages, it's not even apples and oranges they are so unlike each other,” he pointed out

"First of all road racing isn't an American sport, oval racing is,” he explained. "It's like soccer in this country. It has never succeeded and I don't think it will ever succeed because it is not our game.

"It's not an American sport and that is never going to change."

Gossage however acknowledged that teams needed to be in the US.

"It's the world's largest economy and Formula 1 is a global sport so it's an obvious hole on their schedule," he said.

The U.S. Grand Prix will be held at the purpose-built F1 track in Austin, called the Circuit of The Americas.

"I think a lot of people were surprised about Austin it isn't a large market or an international market," believed Gossage. "I think it will be quite successful this year the question is can it sustain that success.

"You look at the history of Formula 1 in the U.S. and it has never maintained any degree of success in the last 30 years,” he added. "I hope they can but it is going to be a challenge ...they (F1) haven't made it easy for themselves."

 

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