Plans for an inaugural Formula 1 race in Miami have been approved after the city’s commission voted in favour of hosting a round on the calendar from 2019. 

Last week initial plans for a race in downtown Miami were announced, with the Florida city set to join Austin’s Circuit of the Americas in becoming the second US-based venue for next season as part of a 10-year-deal to host the race until 2028. 

Thursday’s decision has given the city the green light to enter further negotiations with new F1 owners Liberty Media to agree upon the finer details of a race contract. 

The move also provides Liberty with a boost in its bid to crack the American market, an aim it has made clear since taking over ownership of the sport back last year. 

“With the unanimous votes at both the City of Miami and Miami-Dade County’s Economic Development and Tourism Committee, we are very pleased to have received preliminary approval towards bringing a Formula 1 Grand Prix to Miami," said Sean Bratches, F1 managing director of commercial operations.

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"We recognise that this is only the start of the process and we will immediately get to work with the various community stakeholders, the City of Miami, the Port of Miami, Bayfront Park Management Trust and others, in order to reach a final agreement.

"Formula 1 in Miami represents a fantastic opportunity to bring the greatest racing spectacle on the planet to one of the world’s most iconic cities, and we are delighted that the journey is underway.”

Images of a provisional circuit layout, which would see F1 cars race past the American Airlines Arena, the Biscayne Boulevard and include a high-speed bridge section along Port Boulevard, received a mixed response from drivers when the topic was brought up during Thursday’s media sessions in Barcelona

Lewis Hamilton criticised the proposed track and offered to help designers improve the circuit, adding he “knows Miami quite well.”

 

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