Formula One has seen a remarkably rapid growth in the US during the past few years, and what a massive market it is for the popular motorsport to really begin spinning its wheels in.
The USA is a particularly sporting nation and with both NASCAR and IndyCar championships already being enjoyed by millions of American fans there is certainly a place there for F1.
Back in 2010 there was a similar attempt to introduce a US team and get them on the track to race against the Europeans, however this idea failed almost as quickly as it was conceived. The project itself never even made it to the grid.
This time around the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) has given the go ahead for the Haas F1 Team to join and thankfully it appears that at least for now everything is going according to plan. The new Formula One team, set up by NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team co-owner Gene Haas, is expected to begin racing in the 2016 season.
So what is the difference this time around which will mean that this F1 attempt won’t simply face the same pitfalls as it did 5 years ago? Well for one the company that is behind the project is already well established having been involved in the North Carolinian based Stewart-Haas NASCAR team for several years. A team that itself has already participated in nearly 120 races since its debut back in 2003. There is also a much need racing heritage behind the team and the corporate operations behind it. So with ample experience and resource to help back things up the Haas F1 team should have a much better chance of success.
Even with plenty of experience once the team begin competing against the likes of Ferrari, Renault and Mercedes they’ll have a huge challenge on their hands. California born racer Alexander Rossi is the hot favourite to get behind the wheel when Haas takes to the grid and it’ll certainly be another excellent carrot for US supporters to get behind. The sport itself will get a lot more interest in the team can acquire a home-bred racer for their fans to cheer on.
If all goes according to plan then 2016 could be an exciting time for Formula One racing, especially if you live in the US. Sponsorship, merchandise, video games and even Formula 1 casino games will all have to evolve to include the new kids on the grid.
Image via Caterham F1 Team and Red Bull Racing