The Rise of Formula One Racing in America
Formula One racing has its roots in Europe, but the sport has seen a rise in popularity in America in recent years. The first Formula One race was held in 1950, and the sport has since grown to be one of the most popular motorsports in the world. Formula One racing is known for its high-speed action and skilled drivers, and the races are held on some of the most famous racetracks in the world.
When Did Formula One Racing Start in America
Formula One racing traces its roots back to the European Grand Prix motor racing of the 1920s and 1930s. The first “formula” race was held at Brooklands in England in 1926. The race was won by an Italian driver, Antonio Ascari, driving a Alfa Romeo.
The early years of Formula One were dominated by teams from Italy and Germany, with French and British teams also competing. The first World Championship race was held in 1950 at Silverstone in England. The winner was Italian driver Giuseppe “Nino” Farina, driving an Alfa Romeo.
The World Championship was not held in 1952 and 1953 due to a lack of interest from the teams. It was revived in 1954 and has been held every year since then.
The First American Grand Prix
The first American Grand Prix was held on Thanksgiving Day in 1908, at the course of the Riverhead Raceway on Long Island. It was won by Georges Boillot of France driving a Peugeot. The race was organised by two local car dealers, William Kissam Vanderbilt Jr and Andrew L. Bourke-White. Vanderbilt had become interested in motor racing after seeing races in Europe, and decided to bring the sport to the United States.
The race attracted a large number of European teams and drivers, as well as a significant number of American entries. Among the European entrants were Boillot, who would go on to win the race, as well as Louis Wagner and Howard Wilcox driving Fiats. American entries included Alexander Winton driving a Winton, Walter Christie driving a Christie and Barney Oldfield driving a Benz.
The race was run over a distance of 309 miles (497 km), with Boillot winning in a time of 6 hours 5 minutes 58 seconds, at an average speed of 50.8 mph (81.7 km/h). Wagner finished second in a time of 6 hours 8 minutes 9 seconds, while Wilcox finished third in a time of 6 hours 12 minutes 3 seconds.
The Rise of Formula One Racing in America
Formula One racing has been around since the early 1900s, but it wasn’t until the late 1950s that it started to gain popularity in America. The first official race was held in 1958 at Sebring International Raceway in Florida. Since then, the sport has grown exponentially in popularity.
The First American Formula One Team
Formula One racing teams first came to American soil in 1960, when the United States Grand Prix was held at Sebring International Raceway in Florida. Despite the fact that no American drivers were competing, the race was a success, drawing a crowd of over 200,000 spectators. The race proved that there was an audience for Formula One racing in America, and it wasn’t long before teams began to sprout up on both sides of the Atlantic.
In 1963, the brand new Indianapolis Motor Speedway held their first ever Formula One race, the United States Grand Prix. Once again, no American drivers were competing, but the event was a huge success nevertheless. The following year saw the debut of the first ever all-American Formula One team: Eagle-Weslake.
Eagle-Weslake was formed by two Englishmen, Dan Gurney and Carroll Shelby. Gurney was a very successful driver who had competed in Formula One races all over the world, while Shelby was a former racing driver who had turned his hand to car construction. Together, they set about creating an American team that could compete with the best in the world.
Their first car was based on a British design and powered by an American V8 engine. It made its debut at the 1964 Monaco Grand Prix and immediately caused a stir by taking pole position (the starting position at the front of the grid). Unfortunately, mechanical problems meant that Gurney had to retire from the race early on, but the potential of the car was clear for all to see.
Despite their promising start, Eagle-Weslake would only last for two more years in Formula One before financial problems forced them to close their doors for good. However, they had laid the foundations for future American success in the sport…
The First American Formula One Driver
In the early years of Formula One racing, there were very few American drivers. This began to change in the 1960s, when drivers like Mario Andretti, Phil Hill, and Dan Gurney began to make a name for themselves on the international circuit. American interest in Formula One racing exploded in 1978, when driver Ronnie Peterson died during a race at Monza. Thousands of fans flocked to Watkins Glen to watch the United States Grand Prix, and Formula One racing has been popular in America ever since.
In recent years, American drivers like Alexander Rossi and Haas F1 Team have begun to make a name for themselves on the Formula One circuit. With more Americans expected to join the ranks of Formula One in the years to come, the sport looks poised for continued growth in popularity in the United States.
The Future of Formula One Racing in America
In the 1970s, a new form of racing was born in America- Formula One. Unlike traditional American racing circuits, Formula One tracks are built to international specifications and can be found all over the world. Today, America is home to two Formula One races, the United States Grand Prix and the Mexican Grand Prix. But what does the future hold for Formula One racing in America?
The Return of the American Grand Prix
In 2012, the United States Grand Prix made its return to the Formula One World Championship after a five-year absence. The race was held at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas – the first purpose-built Formula One venue in the United States. The return of the American Grand Prix was seen as a sign that Formula One racing was on the rise in America.
Since then, Formula One has continued to grow in popularity in America. The 2014 United States Grand Prix set a new record for attendance, with over 265,000 spectators over the course of the weekend. And in 2016, it was announced that a second American race would be added to the Formula One calendar – the Grand Prix of America, to be held on a street circuit in New Jersey.
With two races now being held in America, and with increasing interest and attendance at both races, it seems clear that Formula One racing is here to stay in America.