Category Archives: Formula1 Austin USGP

Articles of interest regarding the development of the Formula 1 Austin United States Grand Prix (USGP) track, race, & related activities.

Formula1 Austin USGP Race Date Announced!

Circuit of The Americas News Release banner

Here is Formula1 Austin USGP highly anticipated news!

Circuit of The Americas UPDATE:

We have another exciting update to share! The World Motor Sport Council has published the 2012 Formula 1 Grand Prix race calendar, and June 17, 2012 is the date assigned to the United States Grand Prix.

Now the construction folks at the COTA site have a hard deadline to strive for – just over 1 year away!  Racing Ready is further committed to somehow be a part of this event.  But I wonder, just how set in stone is this date?


Stephen Olvey, New Medical Director of Circuit of the Americas

Circuit of the Americas (aka COTA, the world-class racing facility being built just south of Austin , TX) has just recently announced a serious appointment. The very well regarded & former CART (Championship Auto Racing Team, or Champ Car) Director of Medical Services, Steve Olvey, has just been appointed as the new Medical Director for the Circuit of the Americas.

Steve Olvey - New Director of Medical Services for Circuit of the Americas

This speaks VOLUMES as to how serious this world class this facility will be.  Mr. Olvey has been at the forefront of racing driver safety & medical care.  For example, he was instrumental in saving the life of famed, two-time  CART Champion Alex Zanardi.

This was at the September 24, 2001 race in Lausitz, Germany.  Alex was exiting the pits when his car lost control & passed into the high speed path of Alex Tagliani’s car.  This  T-bone crash took out the front end of Alex’s car & both of his legs.  Both drivers were airlifted immediately to a Berlin hospital.  What could have been a tragic loss of life was avoided by the quick thinking of then CART Medical Director Steve Olvey.  Essentially, Alex Zanardi is alive today due to Mr. Olvey’s quick thinking actions that day!

Alex Zanardi's graphic, life-altering crash in the CART race of September 24, 2001 at Lausitz, Germany

Here is what Steve Olvey had to say about his appointment:

“I jumped at the chance to be in on the ground floor of developing what promises to be one of the most advanced rapid-response trauma-care systems in the world of sports,” Olvey said in a statement.

“I believe Circuit of the Americas will become not only a center where sports injuries will be effectively treated, but also a center for research into the issues that can affect all athletes, such as concussion, spinal-cord injury and severe traumatic brain injury.”

So, Tavo Hellmund continues to lead the charge in developing this preeminent racing & other high end entertainment facility known as Circuit of the Americas.  Racing Ready has heard that, in addition to a 10 year commitment from both Formula1 & MotoGP racing, there will be 2 other race series announced later this year.

Racing Ready is waiting for the latest information to post for all of us!


Circuit of the Americas, Formula1 USGP Facility

United States Grand Prix Group Brands World-Class Facility “Circuit of the Americas™” – Identity Conveys Multi-national Appeal, Multi-purpose Use.

Circuit of the Americas logo, home of the Formula1 Austin USGP!

This is the new Circuit of the Americas logo, announced Tuesday, April 12th, 2011.  This is the name of the facility where the Formula 1™  Austin USGP will take place in 2012.  But the Circuit of the Americas™ (CotA) will be SO much more than a race track to host a Formula 1™ race.  Click here for their Press Release!

Circuit of the Americas (CotA) announcement - with Tavo Hellmund & Red McCombs

Texas Lands MotoGP for 2013.  Beginning in 2013, the CotA will have a 10 year contract for world class motorcycle racing.  This is the Formula1 equivalent of two-wheeled racing.  This will involve motorbikes & racers in the following classes:

  • MotoGP class – the pinnacle of motorcycle racing
  • Moto2
  • Moto3

For more about MotoGP, world class motorcycle racing, click here!

Moto GP for 2013 Competition Motorcycle

More important for the long term viability of this full facility, is that Circuit of the Americas is partnering with Texas schools.  The CotA educational initiative spearheads the usage of this land & facilities just south of Austin, Texas.  This is a win-win for students & community.  The following four educational Districts & institutions will be involved:

  • Del Valle ISD – Race to Learn & their own Green Racing Research program, to explore ways energy efficient technologies may be used at the site
  • Huston-Tillotson University – Business School summer internship program, working with the finace & marketing departments
  • St. Edward’s University – Humanities School of PhotoCommunication, learning to create a commemorative table book
  • Texas A&M University – School of Landscape Architecture to connect Classrooms with Construction, installing a number of landscape features

Racing Ready is pleased to share these announcements.  To see even more, visit the Circuit of the Americas electronic press room, here!


Formula1 Austin USGP Track Aerial Views

Look, here’s the newly released aerial footage of the Formula1 Austin USGP track!

Formula1 Austin USGP - Construction aerial view! - Click to play...

The folks from The Austin Grand Prix, released this exclusive video, via the Friends of Formula 1 Austin Texas on Facecloth.  In addition, here’s their T-shirt design you can buy.  Click here to get yours!

COME AND RACE IT - T-shirt Design by The Austin Grand Prix

So, we’ve got another great bunch of folks that will keep us up to date of this community changing event.  They also offer a Newsletter – sign up here!

Racing Ready thanks you, The Austin Grand Prix.


Senna Documentary, SWSX Premiere in Austin

As part of the escalating, winding up promotion and awareness-making of the Formula1 Austin USGP, the SXSW venue was the US debut of the documentary film, Senna.

Senna - a continuous burning passion for racing, & for life!

After seventeen years, the documentary about Ayrton Senna’s life was finally shown. On Jan 28, 2011, Senna originally debuted to the crowds at the Sundance Film Festival.  Last week the new, award winning documentary, Senna, had its US debut at SXSW in Austin, TX.  This film is composed entirely of his vintage footage at speed, & at another speed the world is little aware of – his altruistic side, giving back to his countrymen.

Senna...looking back...

Here’s my favorite image of Senna’s driving ability, called “Where Senna Dares”.

Where Senna Dares

Here’s Aryton Senna seriously at speed racing in the rain at Donington Park F1, a race in 1993.  It’s breathtaking footage showing the driving talent he was capable of!

SXSW is a public forum for the display & release of music, film & other media, every year in Austin, TX.  It’s quite the event, they say…

SXSW logo

Here’s the the trailer for “Ayrton Senna – The Movie [International Trailer]”…

To add fuel to the fire that will be the Formula1 Austin USGP, Formula1 Team Williams loaned their 2011 Williams-Cosworth FW33 race car for promotional display at the SXSW Formula1 reception.  Here’s their official photo…

F1 Williams Race Car Austin - Official Senna SXSW Promational Photo

But I like these Formula1 SXSW Reception pictures much better of my race-enthusiasts friends, Sondra & Jack (Photos by Art Nunes).

Sondra & Jack at Senna SXSW film debut


Sondra, Jack & friend at Senna SXSW film debut

Seeing my two friends really helps to personalize this event.  It makes it more real that this forthcoming race venue & event is really progressing towards occurrence.  But, we must all take time out & think about…

Senna in a rare moment of peaceful reflection...

Racing Ready is reflecting about being a small part of this big picture! The next post you will read here will be special – it’s about brand new, hot Formula1 Austin USGP race track development footagestay tuned!


Groundbreaking News @ Austin USGP Site

Well, Tavo Hellmund stated that breaking ground & grading would have to start in December 2010.  This date is important to meet the deadlines necessary to complete the track & facility, with the race anticipated to be scheduled for June of 2012.  Here’s visual proof from this past Thursday, 30-DEC-2010!

Grading vehicles on Austin F1 USGP site.  Photo courtesy 0f AutoWeek.

This is more good news in the commencing progress of this world class project.  Having personally visited the site, this small group of vehicles is just a minuscule beginning.  Know that this is a grand project.  This is so based on the data & images that have been made known, thus far.

US Grand Prix Austin Formula 1 track design overvew - a "bird's eye" view...

Here are some of those details I had revealed prior:
Revealed, Austin Formula 1 Track Layout

Some say everything is bigger in Texas.  I’m sure this project will surely bear this out.  Racing Ready continues to keep these Austin F1 USGP snippets continuing!


Eyewitness Proof of Austin Formula 1 Track

Sunday, November 14th, 2010, I motored up to the environs of Elroy, Texas.  This was to visit the proposed site of the Austin Formula 1 USGP racing complex.

Proposed site for Formula 1 Racing in Austin 2012

I wanted to get a “before” general overview of the site.  I was with my visiting brother, Stephen, and I made the following statement:

“I am both unimpressed & overwhelmed!”

Unimpressed – the location seems to be in the middle of rural nowhere, about 10 miles & 15 minutes east of Interstate 35, & about 2 miles south of the Austin Bergstrom International Airport.
Overwhelmed – there is SO much that will have to be completed, made up from nothing.  What a HUGE job it will be!

It was hard to get any sort of land site picture from ground level.  Here’s a view from the south, looking to the north northwest – note the existing Exxon gas station off to the right.

Austin USGP Formula 1 Track Site - Before Panorama, from the south, looking north, nortwest!

This the mapped location of the panorama view shown above…the traced yellow “V” is the location photographed, the blue arrow indicates north.

Map of FM Road 812 - the southern border of the Austin USGP Formula 1 track site

Upon leaving the area, I saw a heavy truck entrance, identified by small (4″ to 6″) limestone rocks.  They were leading off the road’s shoulder onto the track property.  I noticed this at the last minute, as I drove by, & saw a brilliant flush of green.  I turned around & pulled Karlino over.  This area was what I’ll call an environmental testing site.  See for yourself:

Austin USGP Formula 1 Track Site - Karlino at the Environmental Test Site, from across FM Road 812.

Austin USGP Formula 1 Track Site - Environmental Test Site close up...

Austin USGP Formula 1 Track Site - Karlino at the Environmental Test Site, looking west down FM Road 812.

Based on that stake placed by the culvert (in the picture above), this test site looks to be the work of Terracon, a firm of consulting engineers and scientists.

I had no idea what to expect & was pleased to visit the area.  I can only imagine what things will look like as they evolve the site.  I wonder what will become of this Exxon convenience store…

Austin USGP Formula 1 Track Site - the humble convenience store-gas station

Austin USGP Formula 1 Track Site - Looking west from the convenience store.

Racing Ready will continue to keep you up to date on this as it continues to develop!