Water Valve Cover Mishap Disrupts Initial Practice at Las Vegas Grand Prix
The first practice of the $500 million Las Vegas Grand Prix was halted Thursday night because Carlos Sainz Jr. ran over a water valve cover that badly damaged his Ferrari. It took about 11 minutes for the governing body to call all cars off track so it could inspect the entire circuit. Because of the damaged car, Ferrari boss Fred Vasseur raged that the incident would keep Sainz Jr. from taking part in the second practice. FIA, F1, and local engineers worked to resolve the problem as the second practice was not expected to begin until 2 a.m.
The F1 and Liberty Media spent half a billion dollars on the spectacle, but the hype has been tempered by expensive tickets and hotel rates. The 3.85-mile street circuit on the Las Vegas Strip passes several Las Vegas landmarks. The FIA inspection did not take place until early Thursday, and the team principals appreciated the event and the efforts of Liberty and F1 for their efforts. As a result of past similar incidents, track conditions and car safety are being analyzed for future events.