The organizers of the Miami Grand Prix are investing in a complete repaving of the circuit in Florida to try and improve the racing spectacle for this year’s second running of the event.
The Miami International Autodrome was designed in conjunction with Formula 1 to try and provide racing opportunities, but issues with the track surface in its debut led to drivers struggling heavily if they went off-line. Miami GP managing partner Tom Garfinkel says the number of overtakes in 2022 — a total of 45 — showed the layout’s potential but wasn’t to the standard the organizers want.
“We could have just come back with the racetrack that we had last year,” Garfinkel said. “The goal we set out was to have great racing, a lot of overtaking, side-by-side racing, and the track we had last year, I don’t remember the exact number of overtakes … but there were parts of the racetrack where there was one line where there should have been the possibility to overtake, and so we weren’t happy with that.
“We’re going to go through with the investment and expense to go ahead and repave it in an effort to get it where it races better. It raced well enough according to the teams and drivers but we want it to be as good as it can possibly be so that’s why we’re going to repave it.”
Track designers Tilke will oversee the repaving, but there will be no change to the layout despite discussions over a tight chicane leading towards the long back straight.
“The chicane area was developed that way really for safety reasons,” Garfinkel said. “We talked to all the team principals, the drivers, Formula 1 and the FIA — there was differing opinions about the chicane. Some of the drivers didn’t like it, some of them thought it was fine, and throughout the grid it was the same feedback, all over the place. Some liked it, some didn’t, some didn’t care.
“We went through it with F1, the FIA and Tilke and decided right now we’re not going to make changes. We thought about flattening it out a bit — we’re still looking at that as we finalize things, but right now it’s going to stay the same. And that’s based on the feedback we received from all of them, which was a lot different — some of them didn’t like it, some of them thought it was fine.
“There is less run-off, so some of the hospitality areas are moving closer to the racetrack but the layout itself is fundamentally the same. It will be all resurfaced though.”
Among other changes announced by race organizers South Florida Motorsports are a permanent paddock club building above the pit garages, a move of the F1 paddock onto the football field within Hard Rock Stadium to create the “Team Village” that will be viewable from the stadium stands for general admission pass holders (rendering shown above), and new catering supplies after hospitality issues last year.