Lewis Hamilton Attacks Las Vegas GP Organizers for “Negatively Affecting” Locals’ Lives

Published 11/15/2023, 5:12 AM EST

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via Reuters

Formula 1’s return to Las Vegas after 40 years has been nothing short of troublesome for the organizers, with the locals joining forces to call out the management’s disregard for local tourism as well as not valuing the service industry employees’ time.

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They had received major backlash for blocking out the view to the Vegas sphere and the Bellagio fountains to restrict the access of the public, who have arrived in Nevada to witness everything it has to offer instead of the race. The problems didn’t end there because the clock-in and out times for strip-side employees had increased threefold on some occasions owing to the tarmac resurfacing that has been going on for a few months.

With the local’s concerns going relatively unheard by F1 organizers, one of the sport’s most vocal drivers when it comes to doing what’s right has come forward to aid the Vegas locals.

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Lewis Hamilton sides with the locals ahead of the Las Vegas GP

After the AMGxIWC event, Sky Sports F1 posted a tweet where Lewis Hamilton spoke up about the wrongful impression the sport would leave on the people who matter the most for the Vegas GP – the Nevada locals. He expressed his concerns about the chaos, “I’ve heard there’s been a lot of complaints about the event being here, from the locals. I think we have to be respectful of the locals here, so many people here working so hard.”

“We gotta make sure that people are taken care of. There’s a lot of money and wealth in this city, and also the places we’re going in this industry, so we gotta make sure that people are taken care of I think, and we can’t be a circus that shows up and it’s all glitz and glamour and people are affected negatively by it, in my opinion.” The seven-time world champion had stated earlier that he believed Vegas was going to be a ‘wild experience’ for the fans, celebrities, and drivers alike, but if it comes at the cost of the locals’ daily lives being held back, then it would not leave a good impression after only the first Grand Prix out of a ten-year contract.

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Even though Lewis Hamilton has voiced his support for the locals amidst one of the most exciting events of the year creating issues, the locals will at least feel relieved to know that the F1 organizers have acknowledged their shortcomings in the construction and planning.

Formula 1 management apologizes for Las Vegas GP fiasco

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The CEO of Liberty Media, Greg Maffei, reassured the locals that even though there were short-term issues for the first edition of the Las Vegas GP, the positives that will come with its inauguration will far outweigh the current setbacks. He issued an apology to the people of Sin City, as reported by the Guardian, “I want to apologize to all the Las Vegas residents and we appreciate that they have their forbearance and their willingness to tolerate us.”

USA Today via Reuters

“We’re going to bring something like $1.7bn of revenue to the area. So it’s not just for the benefit of fans who want to view. We hope this is a great economic benefit in Las Vegas. We hope this is the most difficult year with all the construction that went on and things will be easier in the future,” he shed light on the economic projections that estimate record-breaking revenue figures for a Grand Prix, ultimately bringing in wealth to the local people.

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WATCH THIS STORY: Rich History of F1 races in Las Vegas Throughout the Years

Now that Lewis Hamilton has added additional pressure and sided with the locals if Formula 1 and the Las Vegas GP fail to deliver not just to the fans but also to the hard-working locals, we don’t see a bright future for the F1 dream of racing in Vegas, or at least on The Strip. Stay tuned for more!

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Written by:

Kabir Bajaj Ahmed

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Kabir Bajaj Ahmed is an F1 writer at EssentiallySports. As a child, it was the Top Gear Ayrton Senna tribute that drew him into the world of motorsports. While obtaining his Bachelor's degree in Mass Communication, his passion for motorsport grew.
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Edited by:

Akash Pandhare

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