“Our Acceptance into the US”- Monumental Numbers Back Lewis Hamilton’s Emotional F1 Claim at COTA

Published 10/25/2021, 7:22 AM EDT
Oct 24, 2021; Austin, TX, USA; A view of the fans celebrating the win of Red Bull Racing Honda driver Max Verstappen of Team Netherlands during the United States Grand Prix Race at Circuit of the Americas. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports


The crowds at the United States GP were stunning and never seen before. Not only was the number incredible, but the energy from the F1 fans also radiated onto the tracks. And it was visible to the drivers as well, who fed off the energy at the COTA. Much of F1’s success in the United States can be attributed to the series Drive to Survive, which brought to the sport Stateside.

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The attendance at the COTA was a magnificent 400,000 F1 fans; as opposed to Silverstone, the home and heart of F1, which brought in 350,000 over the weekend. Further, the crowds have never been larger in F1 history.

Formula One F1 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, U.S. – October 23, 2021.Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action during qualifying Pool via REUTERS/Darron Cummings

Lewis Hamilton, a man of the crowds, believed that F1 had finally made its way across the pond. “This is our acceptance into the US and what a place to be. I hope we have more races here and I hope the sport continues to grow.”

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Lewis’ hopes are slowly getting fulfilled as, despite having added an exciting race in Miami next season, the word on the grapevine is that Las Vegas is up for F1 too! As the once European-centric sport makes its shock waves across the globe, maybe there will be more races scattered across the map.

F1 drivers impressed by American grandstands

The energy at Texas was unmatched. Clearly, the American crowds had boosted their way up to the levels of Silverstone and Zandvoort. However, those circuits were home races for the title protagonists. The Americans arrived for a great time.

In 2018, the data was nothing close to what we saw at the COTA this time around. 264,000 fans arrived for the 2018 US GP, the year around which the first Drive to Survive season was based. After the two-year hiatus from the States, which included three Netflix seasons between them, the crowds have notably increased.

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Formula One F1 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, U.S. – October 24, 2021. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen during the race REUTERS/Mike Blake

Even the race winner Max Verstappen was pumped looking at the crowds making their way onto the tracks. “It was an exciting race and it feels incredible to win here in front of all the fans.”

Texan fanboy Daniel Ricciardo felt his energy in the crowds as well. “The fans were awesome, the crowd was sick, hopefully, they enjoyed it”

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The Driver to survive series has lassoed in numerous fans and as a new season awaits us, the numbers are sure to increase. With the way the 2021 season has progressed, it will be one spicy season.

Watch this story: F1 Drivers on the Football Field Featuring Hamilton, Vettel & Schumacher

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Shreya Sanjeev

640 articles

Shreya Sanjeev is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having attained a journalism degree from St Xavier's College, she finds comfort in the sound of her keyboard while typing and excitement in the sound of F1 cars speeding on a track. A street circuit and Daniel Ricciardo fan through and through, Shreya claims the 2018 Monaco GP to be one of her favorite races of all time.

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