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COTA boss: US fans are excited to see Hamilton

The global appeal of Lewis Hamilton is enticing more people to visit COTA for the United States Grand Prix, according to circuit boss Bobby Epstein.
Circuit of the Americas founder and chairman Bobby Epstein says Lewis Hamilton is playing a significant role in pushing Formula 1 in the United States ahead of a weekend that could see him wrap up the 2015 title there.

The Englishman's ninth win of the season last time out in Russia has seen him move into 'match point' position coming to Texas having opened up his advantage over Sebastian Vettel to 66 points, knowing a 75 point margin by the end of the weekend will see him defend his crown.

It comes as the Austin venue prepares to host its fourth edition of the United States Grand Prix, a round that is increasingly beginning to find its place in the notoriously tricky American motorsport market.

Indeed, though there were concerns the introduction of Mexico to the calendar in a back-to-back couplet of races would harm ticket sales, Epstein says the attraction and success of Hamilton – and his ability to resonate with American audiences beyond F1 – has been a big draw this year.

“I think Lewis is the one to focus on, and his accomplishments,” Epstein told Crash.net. “I think people are excited to see Hamilton and some of the other drivers who have become famous.

“Lewis is popular in the US. Even seeing Lewis, the boxing match in Vegas for the big fight this year, the Pacquaio-Mayweather one, or some of the other things he participates in, I think he's becoming well known now. I assume it happens globally, but certainly his brand and brand equity in the US has increased a lot over the past year.”

With the American Haas outfit debuting in 2016, this year's race will also see an American competing on home soil for the first time since Scott Speed raced at the 2007 Indianapolis race, with Alex Rossi lining up for Manor. It is an addition that Epstein describes as 'extra special'.

“Alexander was the first one ever to try the track when I reopened it. He came to town to do a fashion week event where he was a featured guest and so he came out to try part of the track. So it's extra special that he's the one that is driving this weekend.”



Tagged as: Lewis Hamilton , COTA

Related Pictures

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18.11.2012 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27 on the podium wit Paddy Lowe (GBR) McLaren Engineering Director
02.11.2014 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 race winner
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
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24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
24.03.2017 - Free Practice 2, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08

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Taipan

October 20, 2015 8:08 PM

Absolutely Mark, It's completely pointless comparing F1 with mainstream US sports, it happens once a year if it's a sell out and has decent TV viewing figures then it's a success, simple as that, it's not competing with sports that are played out every week in cities and towns all over the country. I'm not sure why F1 is always compared detrimentally to mainstream sports in the US, the same could easily be done in Europe, Asia, South America or anywhere else. Is there any country where F1 is the biggest sport? I doubt it.

kiwibob

October 21, 2015 4:40 AM

Taipan:
MrJones85: I would love to see the whole grid in GP2 cars. Then we'd really see who the cream of the crop is. I still think Alonso, Hamilton, and Vettel would make up the podium.
It's an interesting thought. To be quite honest (perhaps for a change) in the last 5 or 6 years Alonso has been the best I've seen since Prost at times and I don't give praise higher than that, he can out drive a car and do it flawlessly race after race. Vettel seems to be taking that mantel from him at the moment, the 4 championships he has could be just the beginning, he's a sublime talent. Unlike Vettel and Alonso I genuinely haven't seen Lulu ever compete above his cars level and because of that he is not at their level in my opinion.
My thought is when he and alonso were at Mac he beat him so what level do you want same team same car and alonso threw his toys out of the cot but i have no doubt nothing will get in the way of the facts for you



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