Miami Grand Prix delayed until 2020 by F1

BY LEAH WILLIAMS
Posted on FEB 07, 2019

Formula One admits there was no time to deliver 'wheel-to-wheel racing' in 2019 due to planning and negotiations with local governments.

Next year's Miami Grand Prix has been postponed by Formula One due to complications with negotiations and planning.

According to ESPN reports, Miami voted in May to enter negotiations with F1 about a 10-year deal to host a street race. Those plans have been met with local opposition and last week it was confirmed a key discussion on the event, which included asking Florida Governor Rick Scott for public funding for the event, had been pushed back until after the City Commission's summer recess.
The delay has prompted F1 to confirm there will be no Miami event next year in order to allow the plans to come together at a local level.

In a statement released on Monday, F1 commercial executive Sean Bratches admitted there was no time to deliver "the best possible wheel-to-wheel racing experience" next year.

Bratches was keen to stress the development is F1 taking a "long-term view" to the event and said he remains committed to expanding the sport "in the U.S. and to Miami in particular".

Although the delay in the City Commission discussion helped F1 arrive at a decision this weekend, Monday's statement made it clear the circuit layout is still a major sticking point. Bratches said he did not want to sign off a "sub-optimal race track, just to do a deal".

The proposed circuit layout has changed several times since the negotiations started. The original design was criticised by reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton and was eventually altered due to a local dispute over land around the Miami Heat's American Airlines Arena stadium.

The decision helps F1 avoid a similar situation to the proposed Grand Prix of America, which was meant to take place in the New Jersey towns of West New York and Weehawken. That race appeared on the provisional calendars for both 2013 and 2014, only to be canceled on both occasions.

F1 will still be hosting a Fan Festival in Miami as planned this October